STATE TIMES NEWSJAMMU: A Division Bench of J&K High Court comprising Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Vinod Chatterji Koul on Tuesday directed Secretary Animal Husbandry to handover department’s land identified for airport expansion to Airport Authority of India (AAI) and in case the land in question is not handed over by the Department of Animal Husbandry to the AAI before the next date of hearing, the Secretary, Department of Animal Husbandry, UT of J&K shall remain present in court on the next date of hearing.The court direction came in a Public Interest Litigation filed by Advocate Ravi Abrol seeking directions to respondents to upgrade the Civil Airport, Jammu at par with the international airports with provision of inflow and outflow of international flights in view of large number of pilgrims visiting Jammu from outside the country to pay obeisance at Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine.When the PIL came-up for hearing, DB observed that on 24th July 2020, Advocate Ravi Abrol had drawn court’s attention to the observations made on 29th March 2019 that there is no impediment for the utilization of the 137.78 acres of land which is required for the construction of the new Civil Terminal at the Jammu Airport. “While the status report discloses the steps being taken for reconstruction of required facilities of the Animal Husbandry Department whose land has been taken for the purposes of the airport expansion, the status report does not disclose the steps being taken for construction of the new Civil Terminal at Jammu Airport. The respondents shall positively file a status report regarding the construction of the new Civil Terminal at Jammu Airport before the next date of hearing. Let the status report with regard to the temporary parking facility be filed before the next date of hearing,” the court observed and directed to file status report on the aforesaid issue within four weeks from today.DB further directed the Airport Authority of India to place a report before the Court with regard to the prescribed requirement of the length of a runway keeping in view the aircrafts which have to take off and land at the Jammu Airport, the length of the existing runway and the proposed expansion of the runway before the next date of hearing.
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