AGARTALA, April 22 � Tripura has demanded taking up construction of terminal building at Agartala Airport immediately as part of modernisation of airport.
At a meeting chaired by DoNER Secretary in Delhi on April 13, Tripura Secretary of Transport department Samarjit Bhowmik has sought the DoNER Minister�s intervention to begin construction of the terminal building at Agartala Airport.
He said the State Government has already spent Rs 35 crore to acquire 72 acres of land meant for modernisation project for the Airport. �The Airport Authority of India (AAI) should go ahead with the development of Agartala Airport without any delay�, he said in the meeting.
In reply, the AAI representative said that it is yet to get environmental clearance from the Ministry of Environment and Forest. In the meeting, construction of hangar at Agartala Airport was also discussed. The AAI representative said it has planned for construction of hangar at Agartala Airport and submitted a DPR to DoNER for financial support.
Bhowmik also requested the AAI representative to increase the number of flights to Tripura to ease the passenger traffic. �Agartala Airport is the second largest airport in the NE with around eight lakh passengers in 2013. It has now increased to nine lakh�, he pointed out.
Bhowmik said the Secretary of DoNER was little skeptical about the viability of Agartala-Kamalpur-Agartala-Kailashahar routes although the AAI has agreed for development of these airports. �Since the DoNER has got viability gap funding, it should be availed for reviving dormant airports like Kamalpur and Kailashahar�, he asserted.
Later speaking to the media here today, Bhowmik said it seems the DoNER is little skeptical about the Indo-Bangla rail project over the cost escalation. �The land acquisition cost for the project has increased from Rs 25 crore to Rs 310 crore for the 9 km long rail track due to delay in executing it. Now, the DoNER is scared about the funding�, he said.