Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis informed the State Legislative Assembly that the government is looking to reclaim 5 airports currently handled by Reliance Airports Development.
These airports were handed to Anil Ambani led Reliance Airports Developers Private Limited (RADPL) in or around 2009.
The airports are :
These airports were awarded to Reliance for a period of 30 years with a responsibility to develop and start operations. But nothing went as expected. All 5 airports are currently not functioning properly.
What prompted Maharashtra Govt to reclaim Airports from Reliance?
Reliance Airports Developers has failed to do proper maintenance of the airports. The firm is not even paying the statutory dues. Non-payment of dues prompted shutting down of Nanded Airport operations.
Deputy CM Fadnavis said that we will discuss the legalities with Advocate General (AG) for taking possession. The state government will pay all the dues of the 5 airports as well as recover the amount from the firm.
More slots at Mumbai Airport?
Fadnavis was answering a question from opposition leader. Question was regarding Mumbai Airport not giving enough slots for flights to major cities. In his reply, Fadnavis said that the government will try to get more slots at the Mumbai Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport. It will soon have a high level meeting with Mumbai International Airport Ltd (MIAL) and would direct them to provide more slots for major cities of the state.
Separate agency for Airport management
Fadnavis said that for more efficient management of airports in Maharashtra, the state government is planning to have a separate nodal agency which will take care of all the state-run airports. Before transferring to Reliance, Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) handled these 5 airports. Rest are with MADC.
Talking about Navi Mumbai International Airport, Fadnavis said that operations from the new airport will start from next year and first flights will initiate from August next year.
Recently, billionaire Gautam Adani said that Navi Mumbai Airport project is on schedule and work will be fully completed by September next year.
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Source : The Hindustan Times