After clearing initial technical issues, Pune is finally set to get its own international airport. Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, the state cabinet has given nod to the international airport near Chakan and agreed for releasing initial amount of Rs 200 crore.
The government's decision taken during Wednesday's late night cabinet meet is expected to expedite the work process for airport. The airport is expected to come up on around 2500 hectres of land at Shiroli-Chandus village near Chakan, some 45-kilometers away from Pune along the Pune-Masik national highway.
"After this latest decision by cabinet, the Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC), will be able to acquire land and start other work for the airport", said Pune district collector Chandrakant Dalvi. The state government constituted MADC in 2002 as a Special Purpose Company. Allocation of fund will help MADCto start land acquisition.
The existing airport at Lohgaon in Pune belongs to Indian Air Force (IAF), which uses the space as its base. The need for separate international airport came in after Lohgaon airport began facing frictions during the time schedule of civilian and IAF flights.
brand new greenfield Pune International Airport for the Pune metropolitan region has been on the horizon for a long time and the initial responsibility for executing of International Airport project was given to Maharashtra Industrial Deevelopment Corporation (MIDC).
According to Dalvi, "the MIDC on its part has done surveys and completing other formalities like issuing notification for land acquisition. The actual development of the airport will now be done by MADC".
Once the airport start functioning, it would act as a gateway of Pune and western Maharashtra to the rest of the world, and agricultural and floricultural exports are expected to get a faster movement to its international markets on the completion of this project.
It is also expected to minimize the passenger of Mumbai airport with several passengers of Pune will prefer the new air port.