PASIGHAT- Six new heliports will be developed in Arunachal Pradesh at Daporijo, Itanagar, Tuting, Walong, Yingkiong and Ziro at an estimated cost of about Rs 50 crore within a year, informed Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya M Scindia.
Speaking at the reception ceremony of Dibrugarh-Pasighat Commercial flight, Scindia informed that of the Rs 500 crore budget received for air connectivity in the North East from the Union Finance Ministry, almost 50% of it is earmarked for Arunachal Pradesh.
“Of the Rs 500 crore, Rs 227 crore will be utilized to improve air connectivity in Arunachal alone,” he said.
According to the Civil Aviation Minister, about Rs 70 crore has been earmarked for development of the Tezu airport and Rs 5-10 crore will be utilized for developing infrastructure of the Pasighat airport.
Along with developing airports and heliports, Scindia said it is also necessary to supply manpower to run and maintain the new development and asserted employment of local youths in the civil aviation sector.
“We need to provide training to our local youths so that they can be professional employed in these airports as well as fly these aircrafts. Therefore, establishment of Flying Training Organizations (FTOs) is a must in the region,” he pointed.
The Minister informed that there are only 34 FTOs across the country and the ministry is planning to establish 9 new FTOs in North East. The first one, he informed, will be opened at Lilabari as he lands there from Pasighat.
“In the next phase we will open 15 more FTOs and one will be sanctioned at Tezu for Arunachal Pradesh,” he announced.
Scindia thanked Chief Minister Pema Khandu for accepting his request for lowering VAT on Air Turbine Fuel (ATF) from 20% to 1%.
“I had made the request last Friday through a video conferencing and today as I landed in Pasighat, he (Khandu) hands me the official notification. That’s how a young and visionary chief minister works!” he added.
Khandu, on behalf of the state government and the people of Arunachal Pradesh profusely thanked the Union Government headed by Modi and the civil aviation ministry for the historic development in the state.
He assured that with air connectivity getting a new boost, rural economy of the state will witness a sharp rise in the days to come.