Balewa Airport closed yet again despite generous attempts of Municipality

Flight to Balewa Airprot at Baglung has closed yet again though airport resumed its operation from March after being closed for 26 years.

Tara and Nepal airlines (NAC) had stated to re-operate at the airport as Baglung Municipality had stated to pay airlines companies amount for unsold airlines seats so as to start operation of the flight and to provide service to tourists as well as local.

Lately, Baglung municipality had been facing losses as it had been paying huge amount to the airlines as passengers flow was less than minimum and now the airlines have stopped operating as the advance provided by the municipality has been spent.

The municipality paid 1 lakh 30 thousand to Tara Air and 78 thousands to Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC) in the month of Chaitra whereas 1 lakh 69 thousand to Tara Air and 97 thousands to NAC on Baisakh. Similarly, in the month of Jestha, the municipality paid 91 thousand for ticket price of 14 passengers to Tara Air earlier this year.

Tara had stopped operation since last 5 months whereas NAC stopped its operation since 3 weeks ago. The flight will be halted till the payment of the flight operation till last day is provided stated Nepal airlines’ officials.

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Out of deposited 1 million rupees to NAC, only 48 thousand rupees is left so the airline has stated to operate only after the deposit money is renewed. Municipality in other hand has been asking Tara air to commence flight as around 435 thousand rupees deposit is still left. Tara air had initiated the commercial flight to airport however it stopped flight soon after re-operation of the airport.

The airport future is still unclear as new road network that connects Baglung with Pokhara in just around 90 minutes is being constructed and the number of passengers are less.

Baglung (Balewa) Airport is situated at Narayanthan Municipality of Baglung District, Province No. 4. At an elevation of 990 m. /3248 ft. above mean sea level. The airport provides the flight service under the Visual Flight Rules (VFR) and has Clay/Grass Surface runway with its dimension of 608 m x 30 meter aligned to 010 degrees and 190 degrees. The airport currently has two parking capacity which can accommodate the STOL aircraft like DHC6 Twin Otter, Harbin Y12 and Cessna Grand Caravan C208.

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