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Indigo team inspects Pondicherry airport

The Puducherry airport is likely to resume flying operations within the next two months, with private airline Indigo showing interest in offering air connectivity to the Union Territory.

A team from Indigo led by Drishti Dalmi, Assistant Manager, Projects, Airport Operations and Customer Service, visited Puducherry on April 16 to get a first-hand account of the facilities available at the airport to assess the feasibility of starting flight operations to research.

“The team has carried out a feasibility study to start operations from July. They have requested the airport management to release space for setting up offices and other logistical support. We have provided them with all the details and agreed to consider their request,” said Rajasekhar Reddy, Director, Puducherry Airport The Hindu.

Taking forward the proposal to commence flight operations, Mr Reddy said another team from Indigo would visit the airport next month to assess air safety and airside operations.

Quoting Indigo team members, the airport director said the private operator’s network planning team was exploring the destinations that the airline would connect from Puducherry. The private player will use the smaller ATR-72 aircraft for its services from Puducherry, he added.

Puducherry got air connectivity from private operator SpiceJet, which provided daily flights to Hyderabad and Bengaluru. However, the operator temporarily stopped services from Puducherry last month.

“Indigo could start servicing the Hyderabad and Bengaluru sector. They can also add other sectors. In some time we will know the exact routes,” he said.

The government has approached several private operators to provide more air connectivity. In December 2021, a delegation from Indigo had met in New Delhi with Home Minister A. Namassivayam and Public Works and Tourism Minister K. Lakshminarayanan to explore the possibility of launching air operations from Puducherry.

“During the meeting with Indigo representatives in Delhi, the government had requested the operator to start services from Puducherry to Tirupati and destinations in Tamil Nadu and Kerala,” a government official said.

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