Pune international airport project readies for takeoff
Land acquisition to be completed in three months as 80% farmers give nod to the project, says minister Vijay Shivtarepune Updated: Sep 23, 2017 00:02 IST
The proposed Chhatrapati Sambhaji Raje International Airport project at Purandar near Pune has acquired a fresh momentum with 80% farmers giving their assent for land acquisition. International funding agencies have also shown keen interest in the project, minister of state for irrigation, Vijay Shivtare said here on Friday.
“Land acquisition for the project will be completed in the next three months as 80% of the farmers have given their nod. We expect the airport to be ready in the next four years,” Shivtare, who represents the Purandar constituency, said. He was speaking to reporters during a visit to the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) headquarters.
“Many international agencies have shown interest in bidding for the project and providing soft loan. The new airport would have the biggest cargo facility in the country. It will change the topography of Purandar taluka, south of Pune and boost the economy of the entire region,” said the Shiv Sena MLA, who is a minister in the Devendra Fadnavis cabinet.
“As with the Bullet Train project, many international agencies have shown keen interest in the Purandar Airport. Some agencies have come forward to extend soft loan. The manner in which this project is getting a response, I am confident that it will become operational in the next four years,” he said.
As the local MLA from Purandar, Shivtare had demanded that the Maharashtra Airport Authority institutes a planning committee for Purandar instead of the project being handled by the Pune Metropolitan Region Development Authority (PMRDA). “The Airport Authority would then take up the development of the whole region. This area will emerge as ‘New Pune’”, he said while speaking to Hindustan Times.
Given the emergence of Pune as a major IT and manufacturing hub, the demand for an international airport was being made by industry leaders and citizens for a number of years now. While the project was agreed to in principle, problems in land acquisition in the Chakan area had delayed the project. Finally, the site of the project itself was changed to Purandar with Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis piloting it.
CM okayed project, names it also
It was Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis who had announced the government’s approval for the project and had declared that it would be named as Chhatrapati Sambhaji Raje International Airport, after Chhatrapati Shivaji’s son who was born at Purandar. Approved by the Airports Authority of India (AAI), the project will be spread out over 2,400 hectares of land.