Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao on Saturday called on Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri and requested him to expedite setting up of additional airports at six proposed sites in the state, including one in Nizamabad district. Rao, who is in the national capital on a three-day visit, had on Friday met Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, and raised various pending issues with them.
According to official sources, the Telangana chief minister has plans to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi besides other Union ministers. In a meeting with Puri, he made a representation informing the civil aviation minister that currently Telangana has one airport at Hyderabad and he had requested the prime minister to establish additional airports in 2014 when Telangana was carved out of Andhra Pradesh. A proposal in this regard, Rao said, was sent to the Airports Authority of India (AAI) in 2018 seeking its feasibility reports. The AAI had indicated that to begin with only no-frills airports for small aircrafts will be developed, which may be expanded in the future for commercial operations based on demand.
The airport sites were proposed at districts of Peddapalli (Basantnagar), Warangal Urban (Mamnoor), Adilabad, Nizamabad (Jakranpally), Mahabubnagar (Devarkadre) and Badradri Kothagudem. The chief minister said though the AAI has already taken up obstacle limitation surface survey, soil testing and other investigations at the sites and some draft reports have recently come, the final reports are yet to be given. "In this connection, I request the Ministry of Civil Aviation to kindly expedite the process and do the required hand-holding with the state government in finalising the sites and getting all statutory clearances on a single-window basis so that the state government can commence the infrastructure work at the earliest for starting the non-scheduled operator's permit operations with its own funds," Rao added.
According to sources, the chief minister thanked Puri, who also holds charge of Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, for allocating land in the national capital for building his party office. Telangana's ruling political party, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) has been given 1,100 square metre of land in New Delhi's Vasant Vihar for construction of the office building. This is Rao's first visit to the national capital after the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) elections which witnessed a bitter war of words between the ruling TRS and BJP.