Bye bye Begumpet Airport

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Bye bye Begumpet Airport

Postby Telugugeek » March 10th, 2008, 5:35 pm

Hungama’ at Begumpet airport will be a thing of past.

Ear-splitting teen-mar music, songs, slogans and other boisterous activities by workers of different political parties at the Begumpet airport, throwing traffic out of gear will become a thing of the past when the air operations move to Shamshabad. Scuffles between activists, a common occurrence at the airport during arrival of prominent leaders from New Delhi, especially those belonging to Congress, often had air passengers caught in the crossfire much to their dismay and discomfort. From March 16, all such ‘brawls’ will come to an end bringing a respite to hordes of road users and more particularly the Traffic Police.

“It used to be a tough task for us to manage the crowd during arrival of political leaders. We can heave a sigh of relief once air operations are shifted”, Begumpet Traffic Inspector A. Balakrishna said. On more than one occasion, there were tense moments for the security personnel as well when party leaders indulged in shoving and pushing in full view of senior leaders. In fact, during one such incident, the son of a prominent State Congress leader, threatened a minister’s followers brandishing his weapon.

“Situations used to go out of control because of these leaders’ unruly behaviour, inconveniencing and even scaring other passengers”, a CISF jawan recalled.
Another unpalatable factor is haphazard parking of their vehicles near the airport entrance till the main road at Prakashnagar. If traffic comes to a grinding halt at the airport, it has a cascading effect on flow of vehicles on the main road. Over 10,000 vehicles come everyday at the Begumpet airport and this will surely come down within a week’s time lessening the burden of the traffic police.

Bye bye Begumpet :(

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Postby apwala » March 12th, 2008, 12:14 pm

Airport will close Mar. 15

The Union civil aviation ministry on Tuesday issued a notification to end all commercial operations at Begumpet airport from the midnight of March 15. The operations will shift to the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport at Shamshabad a minute after midnight. The Begumpet airport director, Mr R.K. Singla, said he had information that the Centre had issued a notification for the closure of commercial operations at the airport.

“We may receive the order formally on Wednesday,” he said. “As soon as we get it, we will convey the message to all the concerned in the form of Note to Airmen.” The civil aviation ministry issued the notification on the basis of the concession agreement signed between the Centre and GMR Hyderabad International Airport Limited on December 20, 2004. GHIAL also received a gazette notification from the ministry of civil aviation to commence operations from 0001 hours on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the airport workers urged all colleagues to participate in the non-cooperation movement which would begin from Tuesday midnight. “The government threatened to take action by invoking Essential Services Maintenance Act, but we are ready to face any situation,” said Mr VS Gupta, a trade union leader. “We will continue to fight for the continuance of commercial operations at Begumpet.” However, airport authorities claimed that the strike would have little impact. “Airliners took steps for the smooth functioning and passengers will not face any trouble,” said Mr Singla.

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Postby webgeek » March 14th, 2008, 5:33 pm

I think the time given for the Begumpet Airport closure is too small. There should have been some window time for people to get used to things.
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Begum laid to rest.

Postby apwala » March 23rd, 2008, 1:28 pm

Begumpet silenced.

The 70-year-old Begumpet airport fell silent early on Sunday with the launch of commercial operations at Shamshabad airport. The busy airport wore a deserted look after the last flight TG 330 of Thai Airlines took off from the runway at 11.55 pm. Immediately after the take off, the Air Traffic Control wing switched off its command system and the runway lights were turned off, indicating the formal closure of the airport. Incidentally, the Thai airways flight 329 had the privilege of being the last international flight to touch down at 10.25 pm from Bangkok

Gudawei, an executive from China who boarded the flight to Bangkok said: "It’s really exciting to be one of the passengers to board the last flight from Begumpet airport." Mr Kalyan Krishna and Ms Reena Sarma said: "The new airport with modern amenities will definitely help travellers." Some of the passengers were, however, unhappy with the decision to shut down the airport.

"This airport was convenient to reach. We hope the government will reconsider its decision to shut it down," Mr P. Shiva Prasad, proprietor of an Ad firm said. Except for security personnel on duty, there was virtually no one at the airport after the last flight took off. Meanwhile, Go Air’s Chennai-Hyderabad-Mumbai flight on Airbus A-320 was the last domestic flight to take off at 11.30 pm on Saturday. The flight carried about 180 passengers. The last domestic flight to touch down at Begumpet was the Chennai-Hyderabad Paramount airways at 11 pm.

B. Shankar Rao, managing director of a project management company S.P. Associates, says: "I have been to six countries where there are three to four airports in major cities. It does not make sense to shut down the airport. GMR should understand that this is not convenient for passengers." The Begumpet airport dates back to 1930s when the Hyderabad Aero Club was formed. and it became the airfield for Hyderabad Nizam’s aircraft.
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