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Sikkim’s first Airport operates rarely, fails to meet flyers’ expectations

By Newsd
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Sikkim’s dream of having an Airport finally came true in September when the first commercial flight operations began on October 4 between Pakyong and Kolkata. However, looks like commuters are not really happy with the services due to frequent cancellation of flights to and from Pakyong Airport.

Airport located near state capital Gangtok witnessed only 46 days of operated flights out of 74 days since its first day of operation on October 4 till December 17. On the rest 28 days, flights were cancelled due to visibility issues.

As per information received from Ramu Saha, director of Pakyong Airport, since its first day of operation on October 4, flights could be operated on 20 days in October and only 15 days in November.

Saha said The existing Visual Flight Rules (VFR), a set of regulations under which a pilot operates an aircraft in weather conditions generally clear enough for him or her to see where the aircraft is going, have been the causing the cancellation of flights.

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Due to frequent cancellation of flights, the airport has now started to wear a deserted look. In fact, people who could now be seen on the airports are the ones present there inquiring for refund of cancellation.

With no Instrumental Landing System in place, Pakyong Airport will see more such cancellations in the near future, as weather conditions in the Himalayan region can often be unpredictable.

Often touted as one of the most beautiful airports in the world, the airport has failed to meet the expectations of travellers, particularly the residents of Sikkim, who have to heavily depend on their neighbouring state of West Bengal for any form of transit.

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