Assam: AJP members protest handing over of Guwahati airport to Adani

Guwahati: Several members of the Assam Jatiya Parishad (AJP) were taken into custody by the police on Wednesday when they were protesting against the handing over of the Guwahati airport to Adani Airport Holding Limited (AAHL), officials said.

The protesters were conducting a signature campaign, which began on Monday, near the Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport against its handing over to AAHL, the party said.

They were later released, police said.

AJP President Lurinjyoti Gogoi said the party and the people of the state can in no way accept that the airport will go into the hands of a private company and its name will be changed.

“Lokopriyo Gopinath Bordoloi, the state’s first chief minister, is a revered figure and the people of the state cannot accept that the name of the airport will be changed,” he said.

Moreover, the airport was recently renovated with taxpayers’ money, he added.

The Adani group has started working with the Airport Authority of India (AAI) staff to familiarise themselves with the management of the airport, which is likely to be handed over to them by October, officials said.

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The AAI will only look after the air traffic movement following the handover, they said.

In 2018, the Centre leased out six AAI airports — Guwahati, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Thiruvananthapuram, and Mangaluru — for operation, management and development under the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) model.

The Adani group had emerged as the successful bidder for all the six airports.

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