The Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC),the nodal agency appointed to develop the Rajgurunagar airport,is awaiting the Airports Authority of Indias (AAI) response on a pre-feasibility study of the site. It is only after the study can the agency kickstart the process of calling for tenders and acquisition of land for the airport.
The airport project is estimated to cost Rs 5,048 crore.
In a letter to the AAI on July 14,the MADC asked for the study of the site spread out on 1,650 hectares in five villages Koye,Dhamne,Pait,Raudharwadi and Askhed Budruk of Rajgurunagar in Khed taluka.
Senior officials from MADC said post the pre-feasibility study of the site selected by the state government,tenders for appointing consultancy services will be floated. The project will be on Build-Operate-Transfer (BoT) basis.
On the delay in asking for the study,the officials said the decision on the site was revised and the final proposal was sent to them only recently,said an official.
The MADC asked for another 471 hectares for commercial expansion. We are waiting for the governments consent, said an MADC official.
Land acquisition for the project is expected to cost Rs 1,000 crore. Officials said the amount has been arrived at considering the land costs in the area. After the feasibility study,we will prepare a rehabilitation package for affected farmers, said the official. Mainly non-irrigated land will be taken up for this project and the area has been selected with this in mind,as large tracts will have to be acquired for the airport.
Divisional commissioner Prabhakar Deshmukh said he,too,was to meet AAI officials to take the process forward. Land acquisition will be done with the farmers consent, he added.
Deputy CM Ajit Pawar had earlier said that there would be no shortage of funds for the project. He had said the state government was trying to deal with the water crisis and would take up the project after having adequate provisions under the contingency advance funds or make allocations in assembly sessions.