Current Affairs

Two airports will continue, its Cabinet decision: Jt. Secretary MoCA

GoaChronicle.com spoke exclusively to Alok Sinha, Joint Secretary (Airports), Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) on the Dabolim-Mopa Airports Conundrum and also as sources in MoCA and Airports Authority of India (AAI) informs is the man behind the thrust to the Mopa Airport…

GC: Do you see Dabolim and Mopa airport co-existing together in Goa?

AS: There was a Cabinet decision taken in 2010 that both Dabolim and Mopa airports will continue in Goa; where is the question of them not co-existing.

GC: In the Cabinet decision taken in 2010, the MoCA letter to the Goa Government talks about continuance of civilian operations and not commercial operations?

AS: In aviation terminology civilian operations also refers to commercial operations, you can check with other aviation organizations like ICAO. Dabolim airport will continue. The Central government has spent over 250 plus crore in setting up a new terminal building, if the end eventuality was to close it down, would the government undertake such an expense.

GC: Do you see it feasible for both airports to continue, Former AAI directors at our debate, contradict both State and Centre point of view on the issue?

AS: I cannot comment on what the Former Directors of AAI have stated and under what reasons or questions they have stated that. You must understand that nobody is above the Cabinet of this country, and the Cabinet in 2010 had taken a decision to continue with two airports. So where is the question of two airports not continuing?

GC: How can two airports be feasible in a small market in Goa?

AS: Currently, Dabolim Airport gets about 3.5 million tourists, maximum tourists it can cater to even with the new terminal will be 5 to 5.5 million; post that what is going to happen to the growing passenger numbers into Goa, it is keeping that in mind that the Cabinet decided on Mopa and we also feel that Dabolim can continue.

GC: Many people in Goa are not convinced about the feasibility of two airports in Goa?

AS:
I would not like to comment on what information is being fed to the people of Goa and for what reasons. But people need to be informed that Cabinet has taken a decision for two airports to continue.

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