Almost a year ago, the state government of Haryana announced that two new civil airports will be set up in the Hisar and Karnal districts. The state had applied for five civil airports in Narnaul, Pinjore, Karnal, Hisar and Bhiwani, but it received approval from the central government only for two.
It was also declared that these airports will improve connectivity in the state and will also boost the industry and tourism. Not only this, the government even planned and proposed to set up an international cargo airport in the state. Now, the question is where are these airports? Almost a year has passed but there are no signs of them. In fact, not enough construction has taken place so far. These districts already have flying clubs and they only require expansion to become full-fledged domestic airports. But, why there is a delay in this project? Why the state is not able to initiate their proposal?
According to the recent media reports, there are troubles in acquiring more land for this project in Karnal. The sources say that the land near the area assigned for setting up the airport belongs to the villagers and it could not be acquired until the land acquisition policies are not framed by the government. These reports indicate that there has been a delay in the construction of the Karnal airport. It might be possible that its construction work has been left midway. Also, the construction for the Hisar airport might not have started yet as the government is still in the process of finalising the land for this project.
A recent Right to Information (RTI) Act query in this matter has disclosed some suspicious and surprising facts about the government’s proposals. With this RTI query, it has emerged that the civil aviation ministry was never approached by the state government to speed up the formalities and the process of setting up these airports. This query was seeking information from the Airports Authority of India (AAI), whose response came as a shock. The AAI clarifies that there was only a discussion about these domestic airports and the director general of civil aviation (DGCA) never gave permission to set up and develop them in both these places. It also revealed that no construction is underway to upgrade the airfields to domestic airports in these places. There is a procedure in the ministry of civil aviation that a feasibility survey is conducted in the region to check obstructions in the proposed airports. This is done after they receive a proposal from the state. But, in this case, it was also disclosed in the enquiry that no such survey has been conducted by the Union Ministry in any of the two districts.
The entire proposal of the state government for these airports seems to be full of loopholes and casts doubts on the government. There is be a possibility that it was just a political stance by the government to gain votes in the upcoming elections. Naya Haryana does not seek such administration which does not take serious steps towards the development of the state, but only gives false promises and proposals.