HAL airport: Centre may seek more time to get back to HC
The issue of keeping HAL airport open even after the new airport becomes operational has become contentious as the agreement signed with the promoters states that the existing airport will close when Devanahalli starts functioning
New Delhi, July 8
A decision on whether the HAL airport in Bangalore should be reopened is likely to get delayed with the Centre planning to approach the Karnataka High Court seeking more time to reply on the matter.
The court had sought the reply of the Centre by July 18, but the thinking is that it would be better to seek some more time from the court rather than give a hurried representation.
“The Centre is seeking the official view of the State on its stand on the issue. Besides, the report of the Airports Authority of India (AAI) on whether there was a capacity constraint at the new airport, which could be sorted out by reopening HAL airport, is also being examined.
All this will take some time and therefore, the view of the Centre is to seek more time from the court to make a representation,” a senior Government official said.
The Centre has been asked to report to the court after examining the capacity of the new airport, seeking the views of the State Government on having two airports in Bangalore and considering issues relating to connectivity to the new airport.
The HAL airport closed on May 24 when the new airport at Bangalore became operational.
The issue of keeping HAL airport open even after the new airport becomes operational has become contentious as the agreement signed with the promoters states that the existing airport will close when Devanahalli starts functioning.
The demand for keeping both the airports open has come from several quarters, including citizen groups and Parliamentarians.
In March this year, the report of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Transport, Tourism and Culture on the closure of Bangalore and Hyderabad airports had strongly suggested that the existing airports in the two cities be kept open for commercial operations.
Source : The Hindu Business Line