Srinagar: With Union minister of state for civil aviation Jayant Sinha assuring that Srinagar airport would be equipped with night-landing facility within a few months, the tourist footfall to valley is expected to rise.
The announcement made by Union minister of state for civil aviation Jayant Sinha on Thursday, is seen as positive development by the Kashmir Tourism industry.
“The decision to operate night flights, direct flights from Ahmadabad, Bangalore, Chennai and Kolkota and direct international flights to Kualalumpur from Srinagar Airport is a very positive development which will bring more tourist footfall to valley which has otherwise fallen prey to negative media campaign,” General secretary, Travel Agents Association of Kashmir, (TAAK) Farooq Khutthu told ‘Kashmir Vision’ over phone.
“It will definitely double the tourist footfall. Earlier due to the lack of Instrumental Landing System (ILS) and Approach Landing light system guiding the landing of flights in our Airports, not only tourists but the patients and students were suffering greatly and now with the announcement by the Union Minister it will ease out the situation, Katthu said.
”Direct flights from Kolkata, Chennai, Ahemadabad, Banglore, will help us a great deal because in absence of direct flights, the travelers who had to travel to Srinagar were forced to take stop-over at the Delhi Airport whereas with the direct flights they can complete the journey in just an hour,” Kathu added.
Hailing the decision to operate night flights, direct flights, President TAAK , Ashfaq Sidiq Dug said that this was a long pending demand of Tourism stakeholders which finally has been considered.
“We would like to congratulate everyone who worked hard and build up the pressure for these initiatives to be taken up by the government,” he said.
“We have witnessed disruption and frequent cancellation of flights at Srinagar airport due to poor visibility and the current outdated ILS impairs the smooth operation of Air Travel during low visibility at the Srinagar Airport which not only has serious impact on Kashmir’s economy but locals at large have to suffer due to frequent closure of Srinagar – Jammu National highway during winters. The only other option of Air Travel also remain affected by the present outdated ILS. However with the announcement, the issues are expected to get resolved and it will give a boost to our economy as well,” Ashfaq added.