Lucknow’s Saifai Airport Plans a 4-crore Renovation

According to news reports, plans are afoot to upgrade and renovate the Lucknow airport, Saifai, which is not used much except for landing of VIP aircrafts.

Last month Union civil aviation minister Ajit Singh had alleged that the UP government was not cooperating with the ministry for the upgradation of certain airports in the state.

According to sources, the public works department (PWD) has framed a plan to spruce up Saifai airport’s runway and lights at an estimated cost of about Rs 4 crore. The renovation is expected to be completed by March this year.

The report also stated that in July last year, the SP government had allocated Rs 1 crore for repair of the airport’s boundary and Rs 20 lakh for an inspection house. The tender documents of PWD categorically mention “special repair works” to be carried out at the airport.

PWD sources said the work on the airport airstrip would be carried out on a war-footing to meet the March deadline. Saifai airport was ignored and its maintenance suspended during the previous Mayawati regime.

The decision to improve airport’s runway lights comes seven years after a state pilot faced an inquiry for landing an aircraft, with Mulayam Singh Yadav on board, in Saifai during the night even though it was not equipped for night operations. The incident dates back to January 2005 when a state pilot, after giving an undertaking, flew Mulayam to Saifai, reportedly on his own risk despite objections by the Airports Authority of India.

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