India may add 80 airports in next 4-5 years; new rules for aerodromes

News Network
October 2, 2022

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New Delhi, Oct 2: India is likely to add nearly 80 airports in the next four to five years, the aviation regulator has said. However, aerodromes need to fulfil certain requirements to start the operation of flights.

In the last eight years, the number of airports in the country has increased from 74 to 141, and as per the Ministry of Civil Aviation, this will grow up to 220 in the next four to five years.

The Civil Aviation Ministry has given 'in-principle' approval for setting up of 21 greenfield airports across the country, including Mopa in Goa; Navi Mumbai, Shirdi and Sindhudurg in Maharashtra; Kalaburagi, Vijayapura, Hassan and Shivamogga in Karnataka; Dabra in Madhya Pradesh; Kushinagar and Noida (Jewar) in Uttar Pradesh; Dholera and Hirasar (Rajkot) in Gujarat; Karaikal in Puducherry; Dagadarthi (Nellore), Bhogapuram and Orvakal (Kurnool) in Andhra Pradesh; Durgapur in West Bengal; Pakyong in Sikkim; Kannur in Kerala; and Hollongi (Itanagar) in Arunachal Pradesh.

So far, eight greenfield airports -- namely Durgapur, Shirdi, Sindhudurg, Pakyong, Kannur, Kalaburagi, Orvakal and Kushinagar -- have been operationalised.

As per the Aviation Ministry, in the financial year 2022-23, the Centre has granted site clearance to the Himachal Pradesh government for development of a new greenfield airport at Nagchala, Mandi. Besides, 35 airports, helipads and water aerodromes are targeted for development during FY 2022-23 under RCS-UDAN.

An official said that for safety purposes, an aerodrome needs to meet the specifications regarding its management systems, operational procedures, physical characteristics, assessment and treatment of obstacles, visual aids, rescue and fire-fighting services, as per the DGCA CAR (Civil Aviation Requirement).

While these guidelines are for the licensing of the aerodrome from the technical point of view, the licence for operation of airports is granted by the Central government as per the Civil Aviation policy.

As far as site clearance for a greenfield airport for public use is concerned, prior to commencing the construction, the owner or developer of the greenfield aerodrome will have to file applications to the steering committee at the Ministry of Civil Aviation.

The request for site approval and issuance of in-principle approval in respect of these aerodromes will be dealt by the concerned department in the Ministry as per the greenfield airport policy.

Licence for the aerodromes is given in two categories, including for private use and for public use and usage of private use aerodromes excludes the operation of scheduled flights.

For the public use category, the Ministry of Civil Aviation will grant site clearance and 'in-principle' approval for all proposals as per the greenfield airport policy.

On the other hand, for the private use category, site clearance as well as 'in-principle' approval will be granted by the regulator as per technical assessment of the site and based on usage of the airport.

The 'in-principle' approval granted by DGCA indicates that the proposed airport is essentially meant for non-commercial operations by the licensee and by individuals specifically authorised by the licensee only, said the DGCA, as per the new guidelines.

Explaining the procedure for converting the usage of airports, the guidelines said that the government approvals as per the prevailing policy will be required for this.

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News Network
November 25,2022

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Mangaluru, Nov 25: In yet another attempt to deepen the communal divide in coastal Karnataka, the Hindu Jagaran Vedike has put up a banner at the entrance of Kukke Sri Subrahmanya Temple in Dakshina Kannada district barring non-Hindu traders from conducting business in the premises during the Champa Shashti festival. 

Champa Shashti Mahotsava, which began with a Sheshavahana Bandi Utsava on Monday (November 21), will continue till December 5, and the Champa Shashti Maharatotsava will be held on Tuesday (November 29).

The banner reads: “Business activities by people from other religions are banned in this premises during the Kukke Subrahmanya Champa Shashti festival.”

Besides the banner, the HJV Kukke unit has also written to the temple management committee, asking it to take “necessary action” to stop non-Hindu traders from conducting business during the festival.

Hariprasad K, HJV member, in the letter to the temple management, said: “As per the Karnataka Hindu Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments Act, people from other religions should not be allowed to conduct business during the festival. The sanctity of the temple should be protected, and law and order maintained. ”

Mohanram Sulli, president, temple management committee, said the management has been following the rule and non-Hindu traders are anyway not allowed to conduct business on the temple premises.

“We do not have an option under the law to allow people from other religions to conduct business within temple limits,” Sulli said. “As per the Karnataka Hindu Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments Act, we can neither lease properties, nor execute a tender to persons from other religions. We have been following the rules.”

Asked to comment on the letter written by the HJV, Sulli said that the temple committee need not adopt any additional resolution, as the law itself is specific and sufficient.

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News Network
November 24,2022

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Khandwa (MP), Nov 24: Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and her family members joined her brother Rahul Gandhi this morning as the Bharat Jodo Yatra moved through Madhya Pradesh.

This is the first time Priyanka Gandhi, the general secretary in-charge of Uttar Pradesh, will be participating in the yatra, set out for Kashmir from Kanyakumari in Tamil Nadu on September 7.

The Congress shared an image of Priyanka and Rahul Gandhi walking shoulder to shoulder and wrote: Our steps will be stronger when we walk together.

The yatra, which entered Madhya Pradesh on Wednesday after completing its Maharashtra leg, will cover a distance of 380 kilometres in Madhya Pradesh before proceeding to Rajasthan.

A large number of Congressmen carrying the tricolour in their hands reached Bodarli village as the foot procession crossed over from Maharashtra into Madhya Pradesh.

Speaking on the occasion, Rahul Gandhi said, "This yatra is against hatred, violence and fear being spread in the country. We have started the Bharat Jodo Yatra by taking the tricolour in our hands from Kanyakumari. Nobody can stop this tricolour from reaching Srinagar."

The Congress has made elaborate arrangements for the yatra in MP, where the Assembly polls are due next year. Senior leaders Kamal Nath and Digvijaya Singh have also joined the yatra.

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News Network
November 16,2022

Udupi, Nov 16: A group of hardline Hindu activists staged a communally motivated protest against a private school in Kundapura taluk of Karnataka’s Udupi district after school authorities included 'Azan' (Muslim prayer call) in sarva dharma prayer. 

Ironically, the school management was quick to tender an apology and promise the Hindutva outfits not to repeat such things in future.  

The incident took place on Tuesday, November 15, when the Mother Teresa Memorial School at Shankaranarayana in Kundapura hosted a taluk-level primary and high school sports meet at the playground of a Government PU College. 

The school was founded by two lady entrepreneurs Renita Lobo and Shamitha Rao and sponsored by Mother Teresa Memorial Education Trust. Mangaluru.

According to Shamitha Rao, “the students were performing prayer songs on the theme 'sarva dharma' (all religions). Accordingly, the dance started with chanting 'Om' and later featured the bell of a church and continued with Azan. The dance ended with asathoma sadgamaya...”

“It was our mistake for having chosen Azan. We had no intention to hurt the sentiments of the people. Utmost care will be taken to ensure that such incidents do not recur in the school,” she added.

"The 25-year-old school has been playing ‘gayathri mantra’ when children enter the school premises daily through our intercom system. Later, we play national anthem at 9.09 am before the commencement of the classes. We have been giving emphasis to communal harmony in the vicinity,” she said.

Umesh Shetty, former taluk panchayat member said, “I was at the stage when the students performed and we objected to it immediately. We did not want to stage a protest there itself as there were a large number of students at the venue and we did not want to raise the issue of religion in front of them."

Hindutva activists staged a protest at Shankaranarayana on Wednesday condemning the incident and submitted a complaint to the BEO to ensure that such incidents do not occur again in the taluk. "We raised an objection to making Hindu students dance for Azan,” activists said.

When asked about the incident, the Udupi DDPI, N K Shivaraj, said, “the school authorities have clarified that the purpose of making the students dance for Azan was to observe religious harmony. It aimed only at showcasing harmony and nothing else.”

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