Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today voiced concern over suspension of Air India flights from Bhubaneswar to Bangkok and Bengaluru and sought the Centre's intervention for quick restoration of these operations.
In a letter to Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu, the chief minister also urged him to explore the possibility of starting international air operations from Bhubaneswar to other South East Asian countries in view of immense potential in these routes.
"It is a matter of serious concern that very recently Air india has suspended the direct flight services from Bhubaneswar-Bangkok and Bhubaneswar-Bengaluru," Patnaik said.
Thouugh Bhubaneswar Airport got international tag on October 30, 2010, the international flights from Bhubaneswar to Bangkok by Air India was flagged off on December 10, 2017, he said in his letter.
"It was expected that Air India would subsequently expand its operations to other destinations like Singapore, Indonesia, Sri Lanka. But, the abrupt suspension of the existing operations has been a severe jolt to the aviation and tourism sector in the state," Patnaik said.
Similarly, the withdrawal of the domestic flight between Bengaluru and Bhubaneswar has come as a setback for the IT industry in the state, he said.
"I would, therefore, like to urge upon you to impress Air India management to restore the operations forthwith and also explore the possibility to start international operations from Bhubaneswar to other South East Asian countries considering the immense potential in these routes," the chief minister said.
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