Kolkata flights unaffected by stir, civic services worsen


Kolkata : More than 50 flights departed from the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International (NSCBI) Airport here till Wednesday evening but a strike called by the employees’ union took a toll on the airport’s cleanliness and passenger facilities.

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“At least 45 flights, including two international, left the airport till 12 noon. About five more fights left later till evening while 39 flights arrived till noon,” an NSCBI official said.

Air Traffic Control (ATC) sources said no flight was affected. At least 30 Indian Air Force personnel were engaged since midnight in performing various tasks at the airport.

An Air India spokesperson said that of its 22 flights scheduled to depart during the day, more than 15 had left till evening.

“There was 80 percent load on all flights,” he added.

Security at the airport was also beefed up with deployment of additional Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel.

All airlines urged their passengers to travel light since the conveyor belts in the arrival and departure lounges were not working since morning, while the information board was also switched off.

An official said only two of the three conveyor belts in the domestic terminal were functional.

The aerobridge facilities were also not available Wednesday.

The toilets at Kolkata airport started smelling as the cleaning staff did not join duty. The airport was also littered with waste. A part of the terminal at the entry point was also without power.

The employees were protesting the government’s move to close the existing airports at Bangalore and Hyderabad to make way for the new greenfield airports.

“It is the government which is irresponsible and causing inconvenience to the people and not us,” a union leader here told IANS.