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NO CHANGE OF SITE FOR NAVI MUMBAI AIRPORT : ASSERTS UNION AVIATION MINISTER PRAFUL PATEL

nm-airport--3Amid objections raised by the environment ministry over the proposed Navi Mumbai Airport, civil aviation minister Praful Patel said there is “no question of change” in the project site. Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel has said that there is whatever they have chosen for the proposed Navi Mumbai Airport is final. There is no question of change in site. Earlier, a section of media had reported that the ministry of civil aviation was mulling to change the site for the proposed second airport in Mumbai due to environmental issues. Praful Patel has stated that the ministry had examined the issue in great detail before approving Navi Mumbai Airport site and to just say that the site can move from here to there is not so easy. Praful Patel said there were certain issues with the ministry of forest and environment over the proposed airport and they need to be resolved. The statement comes after Union Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh stayed the approval of the airport in Navi Mumbai post the report they received in public objections. This has compelled the Chief Minister Ashok Chavan to fly to Delhi to meet Jairam Ramesh. During the meeting he tried to convince him of the necessity of going ahead with the project. Ashok Chavan is learnt to have told him relocating was not feasible as that would involve fresh land acquisition and take a long time. On the other hand, about 80 per cent of land for the current project had already been acquired by the state. The Union Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh had refused to give any assurance saying that a decision on the project would depend on the advice of the expert group to examine the environmental impact assessment report later this month on July 21 and 22. At that time Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel had blamed the Environment Ministry for delaying the Navi Mumbai Airport. Sources reveal that entire tussle between the Congress’s Environment Ministry and NCP’s Aviation Ministry is to change the location because two different groups are lobbying with each Ministry. While the NCP wants to favour the lobby of builders and capitalists in favour of the NCP party, the Union Environment Minister allegedly is adamant for the change in support of the lobby that wants to take the international airport out of Navi Mumbai to another city. With bureau inputs – Sana Warsia for NMTV News.

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