With Governor intervention, Jammu airport may soon get the defence land much needed for expansion
It is likely that the chaos at Jammu airport will end soon, and even wide bodied aircraft which require a longer runway would be able to land in the city of temples as Governor NN Vohra has written to the Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar for early handover of army land adjacent to the existing airport which has been inordinately delayed. The state government has already given 138 kanals and 12 marlas of land to the army in lieu of this land in Sunjwan. The army land is needed by the airport authority to expand the airport to enable larger planes land here, and more traffic can be handled.
Vohra has written a letter to Parrikar asking for his intervention to get the land released because the expansion of the Jammu airport has been on a standstill due to non-availability of land with Airport Authority of India. Although a small chunk has been vacated but officials said that 136 kanals and 8 marlas of defence land at Satwari is needed to be transferred to AAI for proposed expansion of Jammu airport. This will lead to the expansion of the airport towards the Tawi side, and the runway could be expanded from present 6700 feet to 8000 feet which will ensure better operational facilities for the airplanes. At present Jammu airport can’t handle large wide bodied aircrafts, and the lack of land also has ensured that the parking facilities in the vicinity are inadequate. It is because of stringent security measures, and lack of parking that thousands of people who use the airport have to suffer.
The state government meanwhile says that it has handed over 138 kanals and 12 marlas of forest land to the army in lieu of defence land in Satwari. However the long delay in the transfer by army officials has forced Governor Vohra to make the intervention at the highest levels. The airport expansion will involve expansion of terminal building from present 6500 sq meters to 14,500 sq meters. It will also help in boosting the accommodation for passengers apart from allowing more planes to serve the city.
The army meanwhile wants the state to compensate for the loss of civil structures in it’s land, and wants that state government should pay for the erection of new structures in Sunjwan.