`Delay in clearance to Mumbai airport to have adverse effect`
With the second airport project for Mumbai remaining stalled due to environmental concerns, the Civil Aviation Ministry today said any more delay in granting clearance to it will have an adverse effect on air connectivity.
New Delhi: With the second airport project
for Mumbai remaining stalled due to environmental concerns,
the Civil Aviation Ministry today said any more delay in
granting clearance to it will have an adverse effect on air
connectivity to the country`s financial capital.
"Any further delay will have a cascading effect on the
connectivity to Mumbai and the growth of the country`s
economy," an official spokesperson said here.
The statement came hours after a group of MPs from
Maharashtra met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to seek his
intervention in expediting the development of Navi Mumbai
airport which has been stalled due to the delay in clearances
from the Environment Ministry.
It came in the backdrop of a spat between Civil
Aviation Minister Praful Patel and Environment Minister Jairam
Ramesh earlier this month, with the former saying that the
existing airport had reached a saturation point and the latter
raising serious environmental issues in granting clearance to
the Navi Mumbai airport project.
Sharing the concern of the MPs who met the prime
minister, the ministry said it has been "actively pursuing the
early resolution of this issue in view of the fact that
development of a second airport in Mumbai has become an
"This airport is required to cater to the larger
metropolitan area of Mumbai and provide infrastructure support
to the country`s business hub," it said.
The ministry said the new project and its site had all
the requisite space, connectivity, airspace clearance and
would address the issue of serviceability to the entire
Several Maharashtra MPs, led by Sanjeev Ganesh Naik
and Milind Deora, met the prime minister and sought his
intervention on expediting clearance to the Navi Mumbai
"His response was favourable," Congress MP Priya Dutt,
who was part of the delegation, told reporters. A statement by
the MPs said the prime minister assured that he would look
into the matter.
The project was earlier cleared by the Union Cabinet
but ran into rough weather due to objections over a move to
remove mangrove forests in the area.
"The Navi Mumbai airport is needed to decongest
traffic at the Mumbai airport," Dutt said.
The new airport, to be built over 2,000 hectares, has
been planned near Panvel, about 30 km away from Mumbai`s
Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport.
The total cost of the airport was estimated at Rs
9,970 crore and would be developed in four phases.
The Environment Ministry says there are concerns that
the project will destroy 400 acres of forests, which protect
the coastline, and serve as hatching grounds for fish. Two
rivers will also have to be diverted for the airport`s current