Indore: The Centre will make all efforts to start international flights from Madhya Pradesh to boost commercial and tourism potential of the state, Union Minister Mahesh Sharma has said.
"Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has requested me to start international air service from Madhya Pradesh. I assure that all out efforts will be made to connect MP with international air service," Sharma told reporters on the sidelines of a function here last night.
MP has immense tourism potential, the Minister of State for Civil Aviation and Tourism said, adding that the sector will get a boost when international flight services start from the state.
Earlier, speaking at the annual function of Indian Association of Tour Operators, Chouhan underlined the need for starting flight services to Sri Lanka and Gulf countries from MP as soon as possible.
He said that people having faith in Buddhism come in large numbers from Sri Lanka on a pilgrimage to Sanchi (in MP's Raisen district) and in view of this, if a flight service comes up between the state and the island country, the devotees will be at ease.
"This will give a major fillip to religious tourism in the state," he said.
Though the airports in Bhopal and Indore are ready to host international flights, no airline has evinced interest to start its service.
Meanwhile, Indore Airport Director Manoj Chansoria said their airstrip is in a good shape to operate international flights, but customs and immigration offices have not been set up on its campus yet.
"No airline has come up with a proposal to start international flight from the airport," he said.
The business community has been demanding start of international flights from here for the last couple of years, the airport director said.