Leading Domestic carrier, Buddha Air had unveiled its plan to start international flights from Nepalgunj to New-Delhi with its Franco-Italian aircraft ATR 72-212A on May, this year to be starting from January, 2019 but has been hit by numerous unfavorable circumstances to initiate this commercial operation.
According to the Nepalgunj Airport Officials, the possibility of operating the international flight on Nepalgunj-Delhi sector is not possible from the existing facility at the airport.
“A separate sector is required to operate international flights, but there is no such facility of separate sector in Nepalgunj. It will take about a year to construct the infrastructures so there are no possibilities of Nepalgunj – Delhi flight for now”. Buddha Air planned to operate its direct flight from Nepalgunj- Delhi from mid of December but now it is not possible before end of year 2019, Airport Chief Premnath Thakur quoted.
For the Nepalgunj-Delhi flight, the current terminal of the Nepalgunj airports should be made international level, security structure should be enhanced and immigration arrangements should be upgraded. The authority has planned to construct 7 parking bay and terminal building in the west of the airport. The invitation for biding will be conducted after two months of completion of Terminal building.
Although, Buddha Air has planned to operate scheduled flight from Nepalgunj to New Delhi, due to inadequate infrastructure for international flights, the carrier has to wait for complete expansion of the runway too.
Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) has approved the flight schedule of Nepalgunj-Delhi route for Buddha Air to be implemented from January 1, 2019. Buddha Air, earlier requested Ministry of Culture Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA) to approve the carrier to operate 3 flights daily at 6:30am morning, 1 pm at afternoon and 5:10 pm evening.
The leading private airliner of the country has been focusing the Nepalgunj-Delhi flights due to the increasing number of tourists for the Kailash Mansarovar pilgrimage site. Kaliash Mansarover is considered most auspicious to make a religious pilgrimage around its fifty-three kilometres circuit (32 miles parikrama). Mount Kailash is highly revered for the being the abode of Lord Shiva. Every year, hundreds of devotees embark on the treacherous journey to this peak for seeking the blessings of the Lord and take a dip in the holy Mansarover Lake.