In the four Vibrant Gujarat summits, the 49 MoUs inked in the Civil Aviation sector worth over Rs 20,641 crore have been cancelled due to “lack of civil aviation policy,” the Gujarat government told the state legislature on Thursday.
In reply to a question asked by Congress MLA from Kapadvanj, Kalabhai Dabhi during the Question Hour, the civil aviation minister Bhupendrasinh Chudasama told the House that 22 MoUs were inked during the Vibrant Gujarat summits held in 2015 and 2017. In another written reply to a similar question posed by Congress MLA from Mahuda, Indrajitsinh Parmar, the minister stated that an additional 27 MoUs were cancelled in the civil aviation sector worth Rs 15, 215 crore.
Replying to Dabhi’s question, Chudasama told the House, “These MoUs happened during the Vibrant Gujarat summit. In 2015, 10 MoUs were signed and 12 in 2017. All have been cancelled… Due to a lack of aviation policy, a lot of time was consumed in the procedures and clearances (to get the permissions from the Centre and the state governments).” He said the state government later realised that a civil aviation policy was needed to run intra-state airlines.
“After Narendra Modi became the Prime Minister, the state government urged him to make aviation policy as the MoUs were getting cancelled. He made the policy in 2016. After the aviation policy was made, they returned to the state government and MoUs were signed with the Airport Authority of India (AAI), Turbo Megha Airways, Bluray Aviation, Heritage Aviation Pvt Ltd… Two MoUs are now under implementation, while 12 others are under process,” the minister added.
When Congress MLA from Dhrangadhra, Naushad Solanki sought to know the reason for 12 MOUs getting cancelled in 2017, after the aviation policy was declared in 2016, the minister said the rules of the policy were framed in 2017 and the MoUs got cancelled before that. Chudasama also told the House that as of now apart from intra-state flights, small 9 and 12-seater aircrafts are offering services linking smaller cities in neighbouring states to Gujarat.
He said there were now flights operating between Mumbai-Kandla, Mumbai-Porbandar, Ahmedabad-Mundra, Ahmedabad-Bhavnagar, Ahmedabad-Diu, Ahmedabad-Jamnagar, Jaisalmer-Ahmedabad, Jaisalmer-Kandla-Ahmedabad among others.
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