Bhubaneswar: Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik today wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging to issue a notification naming the Jharsuguda Airport as ‘Veer Surendra Sai’ Airport. He also urged the prime minister to instruct Air India for an operation of flight from Bhubaneswar to New Delhi via Jharsuguda. “I would request that Union Government may immediately bring out the notification naming Jharsuguda Airport as Veer Surendra Sai Airport, Jharsuguda,” Patnaik wrote to Modi. Modi on September 22 had dedicated the Jharsuguda Airport to the nation and flagged off the UDAN flight from the airport.
“Your good self-had also announced the naming of Jharsuguda Airport as Veer Surendra Sai Airport, Jharsuguda as a befitting tribute to the well-known freedom fighter and legendary son of the soil. However, notification to this effect has not been issued by the Government of India,” Patnaik mentioned in the letter. Patnaik also drew the Prime Minister’s notice that Air Odisha has suddenly suspended its flight operations under the UDAN scheme from Jharsuguda after October 6, 2018, without any valid reason. This abrupt suspension of the existing operations has given a severe jolt to the aviation sector in the state and has also hurt the sentiments of the people of western Odisha, the chief minister said.
In order to make Jharsuguda Airport a full-fledged commercial airport, the state government had also requested the Central government to consider the introduction of commercial flights in addition to the UDAN flights, Patnaik said adding that the state is committed to provide all necessary fund and support for further expansion of Jharsuguda Airport. “In view of the foregoing, I would like to urge upon you to kindly direct Ministry of Civil Aviation for an immediate restoration of UDAN flight operations and also explore the possibility of starting operations from Jharsuguda to other parts of the state and neighbouring states through any Airlines either under RCS-UDAN or otherwise,” Patnaik said. Patnaik also requested the Prime Minister to kindly instruct Air India to start operation from Bhubaneswar to New Delhi via Jharsuguda so that people of western parts of Odisha can be benefited.