New Delhi, Aug 19 (IANS) The government on Wednesday said it plans to allow on pilot basis operation and maintenance of Jaipur and Ahmedabad airports by private players.
“The Jaipur and Ahmedabad airports will be taken on an O&M (operation and maintenance) basis,” Minister of State (MoS) for Civil Aviation Mahesh Sharma told reporters here.
The move is seen as being contrary to the government’s earlier plans to completely privatise Chennai, Kolkata, Jaipur and Ahmedabad airports.
The airport unions that time had alleged that the government plans to completely privatise airports on the lines of Delhi and Mumbai.
Last year, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) had issued a “request for qualification” (RFQ) tender to invite interested entities to participate in the process.
However, the minister did not divulge further details about the new proposal or the likelihood of undertaking similar activities at Chennai or Kolkata airports.
The minister elaborated that other airports will be taken up as and when required and that the decision will be based on the experience gained out of handing-over the operations and maintenance of Jaipur and Ahmedabad airports.
On July 21, the minister had informed the parliament that the government has no plans to privatise any major airport in the country.
“However, the government intends to undertake the operation, management and development of Chennai, Kolkata, Ahmedabad and Jaipur airports through public-private partnership (PPP),” the minister had informed the Rajya Sabha.