With the airport employees of Bhopal’s Raja Bhoj airport deciding to join the nation-wide indefinite strike from February 20, the services at the airport are likely to be affected.
Airport Authority Employees Union, an apex body of the airport staff unions, has called for the nationwide strike to protest the proposed privatization of six airports.
The Union cabinet had in 2018 approved a proposal to let private players manage Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Mangaluru, Thiruvanathapuram and Guwahati (LGBI) airports under the PPP model.
The report quoted Siddharth Yadav, secretary of Bhopal unit of the Airport Authority Employees Union as saying: “If we all go on leave, there will be no one to handle the routine work. Aircraft movements will be certainly affected.”
The union is completely against privatisation of the six airports, said Yadav.
The report further quoted Yadav as saying: “Airport authority of India (AAI) has invested huge amount of money on all the six airports and now government is privatizing such profitmaking airports. It is unjustified as the same government had shelved the PPP mode plan in 2015.”
Yadav alleged that despite having the expertise and making huge investments, the Airport authority of India is not being allowed to manage the airports.
He also said: “There is no adverse performance report against AAI.”
Reports suggests these airports will be privatised for the next 30 years, and the bidding process will be held on a
revenue sharing model. While the AAI could still hold a minority stake, the chosen private player could hold at
least 75% share.