Venkaiah Naidu lays stone for extension of runway at Tirupati airport

At a time when the BJP-led Centre and the TDP government in the State are sparring over various issues after the latter’s ouster from the coalition, Vice-President M. Venkaiah Naidu has said that cordial relations between the Centre and states only can ensure unhindered development.

Mr. Venkaiah Naidu, who laid foundation stone for the extension of runway at Tirupati airport on Wednesday, underlined the need for the political parties keeping aside differences and working as a team to reap the dividends of development.

“Politics can wait till elections when one can support or oppose a party. Political differences are bound to crop up between the Centre and states, but it should not hamper the development. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given a call for ‘Team India’, appealing to the states to cooperate with the Centre to ensure a balanced development and the states must join hands,” Mr. Vekaiah Naidu said.

Saying that the PPP mode has ensured development trickling in to new areas, the Vice-President expressed happiness that the ₹177 crore-project undertaken at the Tirupati airport, estimated to be completed by June 2020, would make it an alternative to the major airports in Chennai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad during operational exigencies.

‘Future ready’

Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha said the project would make Tirupati future-ready by enabling it to handle wide-bodied aircraft such as Airbus 340 or Boeing 747. “The project will make the airport suited for international operations. The aviation sector is witnessing 25 crore trips a year. Our aim is to achieve 100 crore (1 billion) trips a year in the years to come,” he said. Apart from the committed investment of ₹1 lakh crore in expansion of runways, new terminals buildings and greenfield airports, the Union Ministry of Civil Aviation has plans to attract investment of ₹3 lakh crore in the next 15 years, he said.

Zilla Parishad Chairperson C. Geervani, MLAs M. Sugunamma (Tirupati), Ch. Bhaskar Reddy (Chandragiri), MLC G. Srinivasulu took part in the programme. Airports Authority of India (AAI) member (operations) I.N. Murthy presided over the meeting.

‘Necklace Road’ opened

In Nellore, Mr. Venkaiah Naidu inaugurated several projects including the rejuvenation scheme of ‘Nellore tank’ and a ‘Necklace Road’ sanctioned under AMRUT programme. He also inaugurated 20 colony parks, a 5 MLD sewerage treatment plant at Venkateswarapuram, computer labs and additional classrooms in 14 schools, a mineral water plant, two community halls, two markets and six bus shelters.

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