Aviation

Mumbai airport refuses slot for flight linking city with Surat, Bhavnagar

SURAT: In what has come as an upset for the Surti fliers, the Alliance Air, airline partner of Air India (AI), has been refused slot for its Mumbai-Surat-Bhavnagar daily flight services by the Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL).

Sources said that the Alliance Air had submitted a proposal for providing slot at the Mumbai airport for operating its proposed daily flight between Mumbai-Surat-Bhavnagar, reports The Times of India.

The MIAL vehemently denied the proposal, citing reasons about the heavy traffic and the unavailability of the slot at Mumbai airport.

This has upset the Surti fliers and the airport association is preparing to write a letter to the Prime Minister and Union minister of civil aviation against the MIAL ignoring air connectivity to Surat.

Social groups crusading for increased air connectivity have alleged that the MIAL is ignoring Surat airport, sensing its huge potential and the future threat.

Sanjay Ezhawa, airport social group member, said, “I was informed by the CEO of Alliance Air regarding the refusal of slot for Mumbai-Surat-Bhavnagar daily flight by MIAL. This is sheer injustice to the Surti fliers. There is a huge potential of traffic movement between Mumbai and Surat, but the MIAL is deliberately avoiding to provide slots for the Surat connections.”

Ezhawa added, “Most of the private airlines, including SpiceJet, are more inclined to start operation between Surat and Mumbai, but the MIAL is the major deterrent.”

At present, Air India is operating three days a week flight between Surat and Mumbai. Earlier, AI had also submitted a proposal to operate daily flights, but the MIAL had refused citing heavy traffic and unavailability of parking slots.

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