AAI exploring fresh options for RESA expansion at Calicut airport 

Shortening runway for RESA expansion would hit resuming operation of wide-bodied aircraft, says Samadani

November 30, 2022 07:20 pm | Updated 07:20 pm IST - KOZHIKODE

A view of the table-top runway at Calicut airport.

A view of the table-top runway at Calicut airport. | Photo Credit: File Photo

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) is contemplating alternative plans for the expansion of the Runway End Safety Area (RESA) without reducing the runway length at the Calicut airport.

This was informed by M.P. Abdussamad Samadani, MP, who is also the chairman of the Calicut Airport Advisory Committee. He met AAI Chairman Sanjeev Kumar on Tuesday.

Mr. Samadani said the AAI was examining fresh options for the expansion of the airport by doing away with the proposal to shorten the table-top runway. Hopefully, the development work would begin by the end of December, he was informed.

The announcement has come at a time when the AAI is planning to begin runway recarpeting and installation of centre lights from January 15. However, the ₹90-crore project would not be disrupted, airport sources said.

Drawing attention to the serious issues facing the airport, Mr. Samadani apprised the AAI Chairman of the hurdles in completing official formalities. The delay not only impacted development works but also the day-to-day functioning of the airport.

He said a large number of Non-Resident Indians depended on the airport. Besides, the annual contribution of the airport to the Centre’s revenue was high and laudable, Mr. Samadani pointed out.

He said shortening the runway to facilitate RESA expansion would hit the plan to resume operation of wide-bodied aircraft that has remained suspended since the Air India Express crash in August 2020.

Meanwhile, M.K. Raghavan, MP, who is also the co-chairman of the Calicut Airport Advisory Committee, said Chief Secretary V.P. Joy had told him in Thiruvananthapuram that a sum of ₹50 lakh would be handed over to the Revenue department as contingency to begin procedures for the acquisition of 14.5 acres required for the development of the airport.

Mr. Raghavan also met Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Minister for Sports, Waqf and Haj Pilgrimage V. Abdurahiman seeking their intervention to hasten land acquisition.

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