**Bhubaneswar: ** As Air Odisha has suddenly suspended its flight operations from Jharsuguda Airport after October 6 without any valid reason, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today dashed a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to restore soon the UDAN flight operations and also officially name it as ‘Veer Surendra Sai Airport, Jharsuguda’.
The letter mentions, “You would like to recall that Jharsuguda Airport was formally dedicated to the nation and UDAN flight operated by Air Odisha was flagged off by your goodself on 22 September, 2018. Your goodself had also announced the naming of Jharsuguda Airport as ‘Veer Surendra Sai Airport, Jharsuguda’ as a befitting tribute to the well known freedom fighter and legendary son of the soil. However, notification to this effect has not yet been issued by Government of India.”
The letter highlights, “The abrupt suspension of the existing operations has given a severe jolt to the aviation sector in the State and has also hurt the sentiments of the people of Western Odisha.”
“In order to make Jharsuguda Airport a full-fledged commercial airport, I have also requested Government of India to consider introduction of commercial flights in addition to the UDAN flights. The State Government is committed to provide all necessary fund and support for further expansion of Jharsuguda Airport,” the Odisha Chief Minister stresses in the letter to PM Modi.
He also mentions, “Also explore the possibility of starting operations from Jharsuguda to other parts of the State and neighbouring States through any Airlines, either under RCS-UDAN or otherwise. I shall be grateful, if you may kindly instruct Air India to start the operation from Bhubaneswar to New Delhi via Jharsuguda so that people of Western parts of Odisha can be benefitted.”