New Bangalore airport launch put off till May

New Delhi: The civil aviation ministry has put off launch of services from the new airport at Devanahalli, Bangalore on 30 March and has asked the consortium Bangalore International Airport Ltd (BIAL) to consider a suitable date after 10 May for inauguration of the new airport.

In a letter to the consortium on Thursday, the ministry said it could not permit opening of the new international airport on the scheduled date of 30 March, as air traffic control (ATC) services will not be available then.
 
Devanahalli, the location of the new airport, is about 37km from the city centre.

The ministry's letter pointed out that while all agencies had confirmed their readiness, state-run Airport Authority of India (AAI) had reservations about the availability of ATC facilities by 30 March.

'Delays in the construction of ATC facilities, including the control tower, technical block, office accommodation of AAI personnel and issues like electricity supply, house-keeping, air-conditioning at the ATC facilities were the reasons for this delay,' the letter pointed out.