The roof collapse at Delhi airport’s new terminal 1D has caused embarrassment all around. The roof that could not withstand some high-speed squalls and rain on Friday has left all parties involved red-faced. Both the Union government and Delhi International Airport Ltd, which operates the airport, have instituted inquiries.
How far these inquiries will go in sorting out the problems at Delhi airport are anybody’s guess. The rationale for handing over refurbishing and operation of airports to private entities is that they can handle these tasks better than the government. There are increasing doubts on that. It is no one’s case that we return to statist solutions, but merely handing over airports to private players will not work.
Not only the roof collapse, but also the assorted financial levies being imposed on travellers point to a lack of thought and detail in executing complex tasks.
The task ahead is to ensure that development is not held hostage to the kind of incompetence that is on display in Delhi.