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2nd airport for Mumbai cleared

Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel says the present policy doesn't permit setting up of a new airport at Noida near Delhi.

india Updated: Aug 30, 2006 20:04 IST

The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has given technical clearance for building a second airport in Mumbai but the present policy did not permit setting up of a new airport at Noida on the outskirts of Delhi, Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel said on Tuesday.

Replying to supplementaries during the Question Hour in the Rajya Sabha, he said ICAO had recently communicated to the Government that it was technically feasible to set up a new airport at Navi Mumbai.

"We will work on that," Patel said.

On setting up of a new airport at Noida, he said "under the present policy, this is not possible" but added the demand would be considered after a new civil aviation policy was formulated.

Under the present policy, a new airport is not allowed within a radius of 70-km of an existing airport.

"There are issues of air space management," the Minister said.

Patel said Delhi airport had two sets of runways but one was being used for pre-takeoff and post-landing taxiing of airplanes.

New taxi-way has been built in between the two runways to make the second runway also operational to ease congestion during peak hours, he said.

The second runway was currently on pilot runs and in the next few months would be fully operational, he said adding Delhi would have four sets of runways after the current modernisation and upgradation project is completed.

The Minister said there was congestion during peak hours at Delhi and Mumbai airports as the current infrastructure at airports has not kept pace with the growth in the civil aviation sector.