VIJAYAWADA: In a significant development, the Airports Authority of India (AAI), which proposed to establish Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility at the Tirupati airport during the Wings India - 2022 meet held last month, has invited tenders for the project. During the meeting, Tirupati MP M Gurumoorthy submitted the report prepared by the Invest India on “Unleashing Tirupati Airport’s MRO Potential” to Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, who in turn promised to set up the MRO facility in Tirupati.
Expressing happiness over inviting tenders for the MRO, the MP said he wants Engine MRO facility in Tirupati as such facilities are less in India. Speaking to TNIE, Gurumoorthy said efforts are on to increase the air traffic to Tirupati airport. An important step in this regard is that the TTD will set up a current booking counter in the airport to issue Darshan tickets to air travellers. Paperwork has already been completed and proceedings are underway to arrange the counter. “We hope that at least one flight will be operated to Tirupati from each State with provision of Darshan ticket facility,” he said.
Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy took the initiative for getting the MRO facility and explained the advantages of AP for setting up the MRO facility to the Civil Aviation Minister, the MP said.In the report, details with regard to the increase in number of passengers and planes moving through Tirupati airport were furnished. While the number of passengers has correspondingly increased from 6,57,193 in 2017-18 to 8,34,660 in 2019-2020 in line with India’s domestic air track, the global pandemic that led to a substantial drop in passenger demand has also witnessed a rebound.
In 2021-22, the number of people who travelled to and from Tirupati airport rose by 47% on year. There has been a significant rise in demand for flights to Tirupati, making it an attractive destination for airlines. Three major domestic airlines with a sizable fleet, IndiGo with a 34% share of total aircraft movement (ATM), SpiceJet with 30% share, and Air India with 10% share, operate at the airport, it stated.