Delay in renovation project of Nepalgunj Airport could hamper tourists

With the increase in flights at Nepalgunj airport, the government has given priority to renovate the Nepalgunj Airport’s runway however, the project has failed to gather pace.

Yogendra Raj Sharma, Engineer told that the construction work has been delayed because contractor company could not manage skilled manpower and sufficient construction materials on time.

As per the source, 60 per cent of the project has been completed till now. Although the maintenance work was handover to the Pappu Lumbini Apex JV at a cost of around Rs 130 million, the construction work is done by Pappu Construction Company.

The airport has been out of operation after 3 pm from December 30. However, after 35 days of work, 25 additional days has been extended after the work got delayed.

As per the information, when contractors are not able to manage construction materials, equipment and skilled manpower at the time of 3 pm in the afternoon, workers start the project only after 5 pm in the evening.

The construction work is being done and upgraded in the area of 5,500 acre of the airport, with a capacity of 1,500 meters long runway. Nepalgunj Airport has been handling around 20 flights daily flying from Kathmandu, Simikot and from other districts of Karnali zone. As per the project, area covered by the airport’s apron and the taxi zone will also be blacktopped by adding a layer to the existing surface.

Officials report that the delay in renovation of the airport will hamper tourists opting to travel Kailash Mansarovar. There will be a huge flow of tourists travelling to the pilgrimage site starting from Baishak.  Tourist fly to Simikot Airport from Nepalgunj and Surkhet and make their way to Mansoravar.

Simikot Airport located on Hilsa region recorded highest flight movement on June 9, 2017 due to the rapid flow of pilgrims to the journey to Kailash Mansarover, one of the best trekking destinations in the remote western part of Nepal. The total flight movement on June 9 was 268 which is the highest ever achievement for the Simikot Airport.

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