Chandigarh, July 25 :
The defence ministry has cleared a proposal to allow international flights from Chandigarh airport, the Punjab government announced Friday.
Defence Minister Arun Jaitley, in a communication to Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal said Spicejet and Indigo Airlines have been accorded permission to operate international flights from Chandigarh.
“Mr. Jaitley also informed the chief minister that presently civil aircraft operations at Chandigarh were cleared from sunrise to 8 p.m. Regular extension of watch hours beyond 8 p.m.was under process. He, however, said that international flights would be facilitated beyond the existing watch hours as and when the international flights were finalized, as an interim measure,” a spokesman of the chief minister’s office said here.
The defence ministry had earlier not given the green signal to operate international flights from Chandigarh airport.
Since the airport here is a defence airport, the Indian Air Force (IAF) authorities allow commercial flights only from sunrise till 8 p.m. Even though the airport has night landing facility which is used by IAF aircraft, commercial flights are not permitted to land or take off during night hours.
Badal had recently written to the ministry and had taken up the issue with Jaitley seeking clearance of international flights during night hours from Chandigarh airport.
Presently, over a dozen domestic flights operate from the airport.