Defence Ministry defers proposal
GK NEWS NETWORK
New Delhi, Apr 30: Bowing to pressure from Jammu and Kashmir government and travel agents across the country, Defence Ministry on Friday decided to defer its proposal of closing the Srinagar airport till September.
The decision was taken after the Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had lodged a strong protest earlier this week with Defence Minister A K Antony saying that it would have affected the forthcoming tourism season in the state, official sources said here.
The Defence Ministry had communicated to the state government that the airport would be shut down for civilian traffic from June 20 onwards for 20 days to enable carrying out
resurfacing of the runway.
The Defence Minister had assured Omar that he would review the decision and take necessary measures after which it was decided to defer the decision of resurfacing of airport tarmac to September, the sources said.
The Civil Aviation Ministry had also sided with the opinion expressed by Omar saying that the work as well as airport operations can go on simultaneously, the sources said.
Omar had said the decision of the Indian Air Force, which mans the airport in Srinagar, was going to serve a severe blow to the tourism season in the state and rather the Defence Ministry should consider keeping the airport open while allowing the resurfacing to carry on.
During upgradation of the airport in mid-2000, the civilian traffic was diverted to Awantipora air field in South Kashmir, 33-kms from Srinagar.
Lastupdate on : Fri, 30 Apr 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 30 Apr 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 1 May 2010 00:00:00 IST
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