Airport infra growth not commensurate with rise in air traffic

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New Delhi, Mar 11 (UNI) Admitting that the growth in airport infrastructure in the country over the years has not been commensurate with the rise in air traffic, the government today said efforts were on for maximum possible utilisation of runways on the airports.

Replying during Question Hour in the Rajya Sabha, Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel said, ''It is true that the air traffic movement in India has gone up tremendously but at the same time there has not been a commensurate growth in airport infrastructure.

High growth in air traffic invariably puts pressure on the system.

However, efforts are on to affect upgradation of airports across the country to help meet the increase in passenger traffic,'' he said.

Over the years the columb of air traffic in India had gone up to nearly 95 million passengers, Mr Patel said adding the number of airports recieving operational flights had gone up from 40 a few years ago to 82 at present.

He said one way to meet the growth in passenger traffic was to make maximum possible utilisation of the runways.

In this context, he said cross runways were being used on Mumbai airport while at Delhi airport a second runway had been made operational to handle increasing passenger traffic.

The Minister said in order to make maximum possible use of runways, all the major airports are equipped with Navigational aids - instrument landing system (ILS), distance measuring equipment (DME), very high frequency omni range (VOR), runway lightings, approach lighting system, RADAR and VHF frequencies.

Advanced surface movement guidance and control system has been installed at Delhi airport and is being planned for Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata airport. Besides, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) has initiated major developmental works for modernisation and upgradation of airports.

This includes construction of parallel taxi track and link taxiways to maximise the utilisation of runways as well as increasing the length of runway whereever required.

UNI AR/NR Mir Hs 1337

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