Bajhang Airport to be re-operated a decade after, following a successful test landing

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-KATHMANDU

The only airport in Bajhang district which had been closed for around a decade witnessed a test landing on October 10, 2018, of Nepal Airlines Chinese manufactured Harbin Y12e series aircraft. The airport was closed in the year (2065 B.S.) after road infrastructure became effective in Chainpur, Bajhang.

According to the Official’s from the Nepalgunj Airport, Harbin Y-12e ‘9N-AKU’ aircraft commanded by Captain Ang Noori Sherpa departed to Bajhang at 12:24 PM NST and touched the Bajhang Airport’s Clay/Grass Surfaced runway with a technical team onboard to check feasibility of the airport operation for the commercial flights with the type of aircraft.

After the test landing, NAC had planned to operate scheduled and the charter flight to the sector shortly. The technical team stated that it would be helpful for the locals and tourism promotion of the district if the flights would be scheduled for 2 times a week. Previously, the flights of the private company were being operated in Bajhang- Nepalgung- Dhangadi sector.

The airport was constructed in 2035 BS and Nepal Airlines (then- Royal Nepal Airlines) used to conduct the weekly flight. In 2065 the service was closed and in 2066 Nepal Airlines closed its office situated in district headquarters. Airline operating Bajhang-Nepalgunj route said they have closed service due to a gradual decrease in passengers traffic. Airlines Companies have shown the possibility of Dhangadhi-Bajhang route flight but lack of parking facility of aircraft at Dhangadi airport have not made it possible.

Airport officials are shifted to another place by CAAN after it couldn’t operate and now the airport has been transformed to grazing place and playground while the glass panels of window and door of the tower which was constructed some years back have been broken.

During monsoon, landslides block the highway and patient and passengers face difficulty in traveling via road and some patient have even died due to complications and delay.

Bajhang Airport is located in Far-western Nepal at an elevation of 1250m. /4101 ft. above mean sea level. The airport has Clay/Grass Surface runway with its dimension of 654 x 30 meters aligned to 070 degrees and 250 degrees. The airport can accommodate two STOL small aircraft like DHC6 Twin Otter, Harbin Y12e and Cessna Grand Caravan C208 at the time.

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