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Gadkari's promise to air force: 15 days, instead of 1.5 years, for emergency landing strips

Union Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari along with Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria inside a C-130J Super Hercules transport aircraft on their way to inaugurate the Emergency Landing Facility in Jalore on Thursday. (ANI)Premium
Union Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari along with Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria inside a C-130J Super Hercules transport aircraft on their way to inaugurate the Emergency Landing Facility in Jalore on Thursday. (ANI)

  • The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) took about 19 months to construct the emergency landing strip on Satta-Gandhav stretch on NH-925 in Barmer

Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said that the emergency landing strips for the Indian Air Force' planes will be developed within 15 days instead of 1.5 years. 

Today, Gadkari and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated a 3-km-long emergency landing strip on National Highway 925 in Rajasthan for the IAF aircraft. 

The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) took about 19 months to construct the emergency landing strip on Satta-Gandhav stretch on NH-925 in Barmer.

After the inauguration, Gadkari said: "Yesterday, when the honourable IAF Chief came to me, he told me that it took 1.5 years to develop this landing strip (in Barmer)."

"Then I told him that we would develop good quality landing strips for you within 15 days instead of 1.5 years," he said.

NH-925 is India's first national highway to be used for emergency landing by the IAF planes. 

Gadkari further said the armed forces should create a small airport here. "As per my knowledge, there is no airport here in the area of around 350 km. I have told CDS Bipin Rawat sir that you can create a small airport here," the minister said. 

"If you need land, we will give it to you. You should conduct your defence activities there, and there would also be small set of civil operations. If private airlines start one or two daily flights, local people will get benefited too," he added.

Gadkari also said that emergency landing facilities will be developed at 19 other places to strengthen country’s security. He said this highway run-way will further strengthen the country's security in protecting the borders which are strategically important.

Emergency landing facilities will be developed on Phalodi – Jaisalmer road and Barmer – Jaisalmer road in Rajasthan, Kharagpur – Balasore road in West Bengal, Kharagpur – Keonjhar road and near Panagarh/KKD, Chennai in Tamil Nadu, on Puducherry road, in Andhra Pradesh on Nellore – Ongole road and Ongole – Chilakaluripet road, in Haryana on Mandi Dabwali to Odhan road, near Sangrur in Punjab, on Bhuj-Naliya road in Gujarat and on Surat-Baroda road, in Jammu and Kashmir in the Banihal-Srinagar road, Leh/Nyoma area in Assam and on the Jorhat-Baraghat road, near Sivasagar, Bagdogra-Hashimara road, Hashimara-Tezpur route and Hashimara-Guwahati road in Assam, Emergency Landing facilities will be developed.

The minister also said under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the construction of world class National Highway is being done at record speed. He said now our National Highways will also be of use to the army, which will make our country more secure and always ready for emergency situations.

(With inputs from PTI)

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