Pune: International airport's location cannot be changed

Sakal Times News Desk
Tuesday, 1 September 2020

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has clarified that the airport project is in the final stages and cannot be changed. The Center, various departments of the Maharashtra state government, Ministry of Defence, Air Force, and the Directorate of Civil Aviation have all issued no-objection certificates to the project.

Pune: The Pune district and the Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC) administration has made it clear that the location of the planned international airport at Purandar in Pune cannot be changed under any circumstances. The administration also clarified that no written complaint has been received yet regarding the change in the airport space.

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has clarified that the airport project is in the final stages and cannot be changed. The Center, various departments of the Maharashtra state government, Ministry of Defence, Air Force, and the Directorate of Civil Aviation have all issued no-objection certificates to the project.

"So, it is now impossible to change space. Once it is decided to change the place, then all the procedures have to be done from the beginning," officials from the district administration and MADC told the media that the project could not be relocated as a result.

Meanwhile, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) has ruled that no other place in the Pune district except Purandar is suitable for developing an international airport. Therefore, only seven villages selected in Purandar taluka are suitable for the airport, said the then-District Collector Naval Kishore Ram.

Apart from this, the Deputy Chief Minister and the Pune District Guardian Minister Ajit Pawar had testified in January this year that there would be no change in the location of the planned international airport at Purandar. He also said that he would discuss with those who are opposed to the project site.

It is technically impossible to relocate the airport

There are two small runways at Lohegaon and one at the National Defence Academy (NDA). The air force had objected that the airspace of Purandar airport would be shared or disrupted. It has been decided to reduce the altitude of flights from Purandar and to plan the route so as not to disrupt the Mumbai-Hyderabad, Mumbai-Bangalore airspace.

To have harmony and coordination between Lohegaon and Purandar airports, it is necessary to have an Air Traffic Control Room (Air Traffic Control - ATC) and it has been agreed to keep this cell at Lohegaon instead of Purandar Airport area. Apart from this, all the permissions of the Central and State Governments have been received and the option of K-turn refunds is yet to be finalized. Against this backdrop, it is technically impossible to relocate the airport.

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