Union DoNER Minister Dr Jitendra Singh on Friday announced that the foundation stone for the Greenfield airport in Itanagar would be laid by December this year.
Minister Singh, who was here to inaugurate the 3-day ATAL (Arunachal Transformation & Aspirational Leadership) Conclave, appreciated Chief Minister Pema Khandu for taking decisive action over preference of land regarding the proposed Greenfield airport at the state’s capital.
Having resolved the issue of land, there should be no looking back and the foundation stone for the airport will be laid by December, the minister said.
The Greenfield airport project had earlier ran into rough weather due to controversies over the site selection.
Initially, the site was selected as Karsingsa and then Home Minister Shivraj Patil had also laid the foundation stone on February 20, 2007 for the project.
However, owing to technicalities, the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and the Airports Authority of India (AAI) had asked the state government to find some other suitable site for the airport.
Accordingly on the request of the State government, a Central Joint Inspection Committee visited Itanagar last year to study the feasibility of the site and recommended Hollongi, which is around 25 kms from here.
The state cabinet, in its meeting on July last year had approved the central technical committee’s recommendation for Hollongi as the feasible site for the airport.
Later, the state government constituted a committee under the chairmanship of State’s Urban Development Minister Nabam Rebia to study the feasibility of the site.
As a follow up to the review meeting held by Union Minister of State for Communications (Independent) Manoj Sinha on April 26, the state cabinet also approved a policy for granting the Right of Way (RoW) for telecom infrastructure in the state.
The airport which would be built by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) over an area of 320 hectares, when completed, will be able to accommodate narrow-body jets like the Airbus A321 in the first phase.