navi-mumbai-airportChief Minister Ashok Chavan has done it again. It’s due to his continuous efforts that the Centre has cleared environment and coastal regulation zone (CRZ) hurdles in the path of the proposed Greenfield Navi Mumbai international airport and most likely the airport would see the light of day by 2013. With Chief Minister Ashok Chavan led democratic front government getting the needed clearance from the Center for the Navi Mumbai Intl. Airport, the state government is now planning a time-bound implementation of the delayed project and expects the basic services to be launched in late 2013. Part of the 2,100 hectares earmarked for the airport to be located between Kharghar and Panvel falls in CRZ I, II, III areas. It may be recalled that after receiving the in principle approval to the airport, Chief Minister Ashok Chavan had announced about it publicly in a meet with industrialists that was presided over by Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh’s during his visit last month to Mumbai. Work to fill up the creek was hindered by the CRZ notification. The CRZ notification issued by the Union Environment and Forest Ministry was amended this week to clear the decks for the project. The project has already been cleared by the Union Cabinet and the state government had been following up the CRZ issue with the Centre. The primary report on the airport plan has been received from the consultants, and the final report will be submitted on August 31. The necessary tender papers for selection of the developer will be prepared on September 30, and bids submitted by interested parties on February 15, 2010. The developer will be short-listed on March 31, 2010 and in April- May 2010, the agreement will be signed and the foundation stone for the work laid. Basic facilities at the airport are expected to be inaugurated in September-October 2013. NMTV News brings to you some exclusive visuals of the first looks of the Navi Mumbai Intl. Airport. Despite all the assurances, what cannot be ruled out is one aspect to the Congress government making this announcement. It’s no secret that the real estate sector kept the poll juggernaut rolling. The maximum donations to political parties came from city-based builders. Now that the results are out, builders are still a worried lot because already badly hit by the economic slowdown, builders know that they will have to still pay up for the upcoming Assembly elections in October. And the airport announcement might just be one of the attempts of the state to boost the real estate sector so that the donations from the building industry continue to flow. So in all its probability the Navi Mumbai airport will continue to remain on paper forever. Zeba Warsia – NMTV News.

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