New Delhi: International flights from military-owned airports such as those in Goa, Pune and Srinagar may stop after December, as global rules require these airports to be licensed by Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) for international flights to continue.
Worth mentioning here is that the aviation regulator and the aviation ministry have written to the defence ministry, asking it to allow DGCA to licence these airports or international flights may stop to these cities. However, the military has always resisted any move to get these airports licensed by the civil aviation regulator, as it does not want to allow civilians to its sensitive installations inside the airport.
“We have suggested a solution, where our teams will visit only areas that are used by civilian flights,” the publication quoted a senior government official, who did not wish to be identified.
Among the three key international airports, Pune and Srinagar are owned by the Indian Air Force and Goa is owned by the Indian Navy.
Officials in the know said that it was decided at a transport ministers meeting held in Beijing in 2018 not to allow international flights to and from airports that are not licensed by the respective country’s regulator. The deadline for completion of licensing these airports was December 2020, which was extended till December this year due to Covid.
The deadline for completion of licensing these airports was set for December 2020, which was extended till December this year due to Covid-19. “The deadline is not sacrosanct, as it may be extended further but licensing of these airports needs to happen,” said another senior official, who also did not want to be identified.
The official said the DGCA has taken a strong stance this time and written to finish the licensing of airports, as this is required under various international laws.