Airport: Cong. warns of stir if ‘Adani’ name is not removed
MIA’s progress has frozen after it was given to Adani group under PPP, alleges former MLC Ivan D’Souza
Ivan D’Souza, former MLC and All India Congress Committee Secretary, on Wednesday threatened to launch ‘Save Airport’ movement if the Centre did not drop the name ‘Adani’ from Mangaluru International Airport.
Speaking to reporters here, Mr. D’Souza said the Airports Authority of India should take immediate steps to get the name removed as it was illegal. He alleged that upon the MIA being taken over by Adani Group under PPP, its progress has come down, facilities were being cut down and airlines have reduced operations. In this background, the Save Airport movement becomes imperative, he said.
He said no airlines were keen on introducing new flights from Mangaluru thereby defeating the very purpose of establishing the airport. The management appears keen on extorting passengers even as the AAI has turned blind eye towards violation of agreement terms, he alleged.
The former MLC demanded to know from AAI why it had failed to introduce flights from Mangaluru to Goa, Kozhikode, Kochi, Hyderabad, Chennai, Mysuru, Kalaburagi, Bidar and other destinations. Though Go Air had come forward to introduce services to Mumbai and other places, that has not happened for reasons best known to authorities. If flights were introduced to Bengaluru at 11.30 p.m. and to Delhi at 11 p.m., how could one expect passenger patronage to such services, Mr. D’Souza mused.
Except to Gulf countries, no flights were being operated out of Mangaluru to tourism destinations, including Sri Lanka, Singapore, Bangkok, Thailand and other countries of tourist importance even after 16 years of the airport being made an international one. The AAI has miserably failed in this regard. Though there were demands for services to Tirupathi, Shirdi and other places from Mangaluru, the authorities have not responded to the same. Instead, the airport was facing the threat of losing the ‘international’ tag in the guise of reduced passenger patronage.
AAI has failed to provide cargo services despite there being numerous industries in and around Mangaluru. MIA has failed to become a people-friendly airport owing to a lack of information of tourist places and such.
While there were no bus services to and from MIA, separate arrival and departure facilities at the airport were yet to be realised. The lone gallery for watching flight operations for students was closed down, he regretted.