Odisha: Timeline prepared to operate Rourkela airport ahead of men’s hockey world cup 2023

The discussions reportedly focused on early completion of the airport’s ongoing works and associated formalities following which the timeline was prepared.  

Published: 20th June 2022 11:07 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th June 2022 11:07 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

ROURKELA: With the Men’s Hockey World Cup 2023 approaching fast, the Odisha government has prepared a timeline to operationalise the Rourkela airport of SAIL after holding a discussion with officials of the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA).

On June 1, MoCA Joint Secretary Usha Padhee held talks with top officials of SAIL in Delhi followed by another meeting with the Principal Secretary of Transport department, Odisha Bishnupada Sethi and others on June 3. The discussions reportedly focused on the early completion of the airport’s ongoing works and associated formalities following which the timeline was prepared.  

Accordingly, it has been targeted to apply for an ARC 2C licence by August 31 and complete ongoing works and commences commercial flight operation under the RCS-UDAN scheme by October 31. A dry test run of ATR 72 type aircraft by Alliance Air is scheduled to take place on November 10. 

At least 16 fire fighting personnel trained by the Airport Authority of India (AAI) for Fire Category-VI will be deployed by the DG, Fire Service by July 31. Odisha police would also deploy 44 airport security personnel trained by the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security while the State Health Department would engage two more ambulances by August 31. By July 15, the SAIL and India Meteorological Department would equip the airport with a MET facility. According to the timeline, further expansion of the airport as per the master plan would take place from December 31.

Meanwhile, after the expiry of the previous tripartite MoU involving the Odisha government, SAIL and AAI in April 2021, a fresh agreement is likely to be signed on June 20 for running the airport. However, SAIL sources said the MoU signing on June 20 is unlikely to take place in wake of the ongoing discussions.

On Saturday, Sundargarh MP and chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence Jual Oram inspected the ongoing expansion works at the airport. Jual hoped that the airport would start commercial flight operation by the stipulated time. 

Former general secretary of Steel Executives’ Federation of India (SEFI) Bimal Bisi reiterated the demand for a complete takeover of the Rourkela airport by AAI to make it sustainable and remove operational difficulties. He said SAIL is ready to hand over the airport to AAI, but the Steel Ministry, MoCA and Odisha government have to make combined efforts in this regard.    

Taking wings

Target has been set to apply for ARC 2C licence by August 31

Commercial flight operation to commence under the RCS-UDAN scheme by October 31

Dry test run of ATR 72 type aircraft by Alliance Air to take place on November 10

16 fire fighting personnel trained by the Airport Authority of India for Fire Category-VI will be deployed 

Odisha police would deploy 44 airport security personnel trained by the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security 

Further expansion of the airport would take place from December 31



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