Gokulesor airport in Darchula has not been in operation since more than two and half decades and concerned authority has not shown any progress to bring the airport back in operation. Now the airport has been turned into grazing field and playground.
The airport which was established on 2044/45 B.S operated till 2050 B.S (1993 AD) and was closed after Maoist conflict during the insurgency complications and is still out of operation till date.
The airport was listed as a danger zone around a year back by the Civil Aviation Authority’s (CAAN) technician and officials after they conducted on the spot test at the airport.
Official of the airport stated that most of the airports in Far-west region are now coming into operation but the Gokulesor airport located in Darchula is still waiting for renovation and coming back into operation. Though government officials have promised to bring airport back in operation, no interest has been shown till now.
The airport was inspected by CAAN couple of months ago after a member of parliament requested CAAN technicians and officials to inspect the airport. The team inspected the airport and reported that buildings built after closure of the airport and construction of Chamelia Bridge that connects 2 district have brought obstruction in operation of the airport however no progress has been shown there after.
Budget for bringing the airport in operation had also been allocated but conclusion of the test by the CAAN team has stranded airport behind operation.
The airport used to operate 1-2 flights a week in Nepalgunj-Gokulesor and Gokulesor-Mahendranagar route.
Due to the closure of the airport, infrastructure of the airport like runway has been degrading and the airport premises has been changed into abandoned grazing spot. Locals have been facing problems as the airport could be game changer for the district. The re-operation of the airport can bring social, economic and a lot of other improvements in the rural society of the region.