CM demands more Naval land for Dabolim air port

PTI, PANAJI | 01 May 2012 07:33 IST

CM Parrikar with PM Manmonhan Singh

Goa government has sought intervention by the Prime Minister's Office in releasing 3.5 acres of land at Dabolim airport which is with the Indian Navy that will help the Airports Authority of India to undertake expansion of the airport.

Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar discussed the issue with the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in his Delhi visit recently.

"This land is required for the creation of fuel bunkers and parking slots. Due to shortage of parking, the planes have to go back to Mumbai for night halt," he said.

Although the Navy runs and maintains the airport, the expansion project is to be undertaken by the AAOI.

Meanwhile, the state has also sought relaxation from the Centre to allow certain zones to be exempted from sound pollution norms to help tourism industry.

Parrikar said that he has appraised Prime Minister Manmohan Singh about the issues faced by tourism industry due to implementation of Noise Pollution Act, which makes it mandatory to stop the music by 10 pm.

Parrikar said that the government can identify certain areas within the state, which are far away from habitations, where music can be allowed till late night.

When asked whether such a relaxation would promote rave party culture, he said that demarcation of these areas would help the law enforcement machinery to keep a watch.

"Special tourism zones can be created in area where people do not reside. Relaxation in playing music can be given in these areas so that people are not disturbed," Parrikar said.

He also said that the present sound pollution norms were affecting traditional Catholic weddings, which usually continue till late night.

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If our Navy can shift to Karwar (Sea Bird Naval base), Dabolim airport can be exclusively used for civilian domestic and international flights.

With our Navy controlling Dabolim, it hampers growth and affects tourism in Goa.

Dabolim can be extended and modernised for increased air traffic.

If this is done, Mopa may not be required at all. However, another airport would be advantageous in the long run.

- Francisco G. Lourenco, England | 11 th May 2012 13:45


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