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International flights to Dubai to boost medical tourism

BS Reporter  |  Bhubaneswar 

The much awaited international flight operation from Bhubaneswar airport to Dubai will be a boost to the medical tourism in the state, stakeholders feel.

"We have the information that Air India will commence operation from Bhubaneswar to Dubai via New Delhi. There will be daily flights from the city airport," said Biju Patnaik International Airport Director, Sharad Kumar.

The traffic from the city airport can only be ascertained after the start of operation of the flight, he added.

Today officials from customs and immigration, central industrial security force (CISF), health and plant quarantine took stock of the facilities at the airport.

The trial run of the Air India flight is scheduled on July 8 and the scheduled operation is slated to begin on July 10.

Bhubaneswar Airport under the Airport Authority of India (AAI) is suitable for operation of Code 'D' aircraft of type B-767-400.

The airport is also equipped with night operation facilities, runway 14/32 of dimension 2743m X 45m, apron to park six aircrafts and navigational aids.

"The travellers will mostly comprise of Odia locals and leisure travellers. The international flight operations from Bhubaneswar will give a boost to the medical tourism," said Debasis Patnaik, convenor, Invest Bhubaneswar.

As part of popularising the Nabakalebar festival and facilitating international travellers, it has been decided to start operation of international flights from Biju Patnaik airport. Air India will commence international operations before July 10 from Bhubaneswar to Dubai, said Dharmendra Pradhan Union minister of state for Petroleum and Natural Gas in a statement.

Travel agencies said, leisure travellers from Odisha will account for majority of total bookings to the United Arab Emirates.

To attract international fliers to the state, Odisha government has already slashed value added tax (VAT) on aviation turbine fuel (ATF) to zero from five per cent. The decision to waive off the tax was taken at meeting of state cabinet recently.

First Published: Mon, June 29 2015. 20:32 IST