Updated: October 29, 2021 11:46:21 am
Pune airport Director Santosh Dhoke said Friday that flight operations at the airport will resume at 8 am on Saturday (October 30) as the Air Force authorities have conveyed that the runway will be made available for civil operations.
The airport had shut down for operations for 14 days starting October 16, after the Air Force decided to undertake runway resurfacing work. The announcement regarding the closure was made by the Airports’ Authority of India (AAI) on October 5, following which airlines scurried to cancel or reschedule flights which had been booked and reimburse the flyers. The sudden announcement had caused much chagrin among passengers as well, coming as it did in the midst of the festive season.
Dhoke said airlines have been intimated about the confirmation from the Air Force. “The number of flights which operate on Saturday will depend on the bookings. By Friday evening, the airlines will convey to us the numbers of flights each of them will operate on Saturday,” he added.
The airport director said the embargo on night flights (8 pm to 8 am) will continue for a while as the work being undertaken by the Air Force is not yet over. “We have been conveyed that the work is progressing on schedule. I am hoping the night slots will be opened for civil flights by December 1,” he said.
When the airport was temporarily shut on October 16, the daily flight movement was 100 with a passenger footfall of about 16,000.
The resurfacing work was earlier scheduled for April-May this year, but had been postponed. As per the Air Force, the runway work was “inescapable” at the moment and it was important to address the issue of the runway’s rapidly deteriorating condition.
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