It seems people of Warangal, Peddapalli, Adilabad and Kothagudem have held their hopes high after chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao announced in the Assembly that mini airports would be constructed across the State.
With airstrips already existing in Adilabad, Pedapalli and Warangal, the people have been expecting that airstrips would soon be upgraded to mini airports. Take for instance the Mamnoor airport situated on the outskirts of Warangal city. At present, it is being used as NCC Training Centre Air Squadron for gliding sorties, skeet shooting and aero-modelling.
It is not the first time chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has assured the development of airport. During his visit to Warangal last year, he had assured that the Mamnoor airport would be revived soon for the convenience of industrialists visiting the Mega Textile Park from various parts of the country. He stated that the state government will develop the airport with its own funds if the Union Aviation Ministry has any constraints. However, not much has happened after that. Now that the CM has once again raised about construction of mini airports across the State, the issue has once again come to the fore. Meanwhile, officials claim that the city would get a major boost if the airport is revived.
“Warangal being the second largest city of the State after Hyderabad, it will grow at a rapid pace with a large number of industries coming in and around it. With the state government planning to create an industrial zone between Hyderabad and Warangal, an airport would be an added advantage for it,” a senior official stated.
During former chief minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy’s government, the Airport Authority of India(AAI) had agreed to develop the airports at Mamnoor and Kadapa and even signed an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the government. In fact, the AAI conducted a survey to acquire lands for construction of a new terminal building, extension of runway and an isolated bay at Mamnoor air field.
The existing land available with the airport is 748 acres. However, the Centre’s ruled that there can be no airport within 150km radius of a greenfield airport. In 2004, the erstwhile AP government entered into a MoU with GMR Group, which developed the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport at Shamshabad, that no new airport would be given permission within 150km radius of RGIA for a period of 30 years. Sources stated that the government would be writing to Centre to exempt Mamnoor airport from the clause and allow up gradation.
Khammam – Hub for anti-insurgency ops
There is a pending proposal to set up a Greenfield airport at Kothagudem. The district administration had already identified 1,600 acres of land at Punukuduchelka in Kothagudem mandal. Kothagudem airport will be useful to the entire erstwhile Khammam district. The airport would be help people to visit Bhadrachalam temple with short travel time. Besides, it would be useful to SSCL, paper mills, heavy water plant and other industries in and around the district. Proposal for establishing a Greenfield airport at Kothagudem got a fillip when the Telangana government asked RITES Limited to undertake further stages of the project. RITES submitted its report making a strong pitch for a new airport at Kothagudem. It was suggested that an area of 1,050 acres of land was needed for airport development. Police see it as a strategic airport that would help the security forces in using it as a hub for anti-insurgency operations.
Peddapalli – Boost to industrialisation
The government’s decision to upgrade the existing airport near Basanthnagar in the district would boost industrialisation. At present, the airport is situated on 35 acres of land. The district administration had identified land for the proposed mini airport near Palakakurthi in Peddapalli Mandal. Recently, district collector Sri Devasena inspected the feasibility of land near Basanthnagar between Palakakurthi and Raginedu in Peddapalli mandal. She examined the proposed 291.34 acres of land. Peddapalli has a lot of industries including National Thermal Power Corporation Limited, Kesoram Cement,Singareni Collieries Company Limited(SCCL) coal mines and Food Corporation of India (FCI).The proposed mini regional airport in the district would boost development in the area as well as save time of the people traveling to Hyderabad and other parts of the country. Once the airport comes up, it would take just 40 minutes to reach Hyderabad.
Adilabad – Perfect space to park spy planes
The airfield located on 368 acres of land on the outskirts of Adilabad town has been lying vacant for the last six decades. The CM during his visit to the district last month announced that steps would be taken to develop the airfield in to a mini airstrip. People of the district, who lost their hopes are expecting their dream to turn into reality. According to old-timers, the Nizam wanted to develop it as a full-fledged airbase. If developed into an airport, the airfield will provide air connectivity to Northern Telangana region and parts of Maharashtra. Expert says an air base at Adilabad would be very useful for stationing Airborne Warning And Control System spy planes. There will be enough time to detect an incoming threat and neutralise it. Meanwhile, Indian Air Force officers visit Adilabad every year to inspect the airfield.
Tough air travel
People from various TS districts travel long distance in order to reach Shamshabad airport.Here are the details:
150 km is the distance between Hyderabad and Warangal. It takes over 3 hours to reach Hyderabad by road. If Mamnoor airport becomes operational, one can reach Hyderabad in less than 40 minutes. Shamshabad airport is nearest to Warangal.
300 km is the distance between Kothagudem and Hyderabad. It takes about 7 hours to reach Hyderabad by road. One can reach Hyderabad by flight in 45 minutes. At present, Vijaywada airport is the nearest airport
181 km is the distance between Peddapalli and Shamshabad airport. It takes 5 hours to reach Hyderabad by road. Nagpur airport is 250 km from Peddapalli. One can reach Hyderabad in about 40 minutes by flight.
300 km is the distance between Adilabad and Hyderabad. It takes 7 hours to reach Hyderabad by road. One can reach Hyderabad in less than an hour by flight. Currently, Nagpur is the nearest airport to Adilabad.
Addakul airport will reduce travel time
Addakul is central to Mahbubnagar district headquarters and it connects the national highways. If the airport is set up in Addakul, it will be useful for people from Kurnool as they no longer have to travel to Hyderabad or Bengaluru to catch a flight to other places.
Nizamabad awaits Centre’s nod
Years back when higher-ups instructed Nizamabad district administration to establish an airport in Jakranpally mandal, 1,600 acres of land was identified. However, the state government didn’t communicate anything to the district officials in this regard. Neither the airport authority officials nor the state officials visit the district to assess the quality of the land for constructing the airport. MP K Kavitha had said that the Union government neither took any decision nor did it dismiss the request of state government while speaking to mediapersons sometime ago. #KhabarLive