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CM Bhupesh Baghel writes to PM Narendra Modi…

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Raipur, Apr 24

Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi requesting to upgrade Swami Vivekananda Airport of Raipur as an international airport. To substantiate his claim, the Chief Minister said in the letter that Chhattisgarh has been one of the fastest growing states in the country despite the global economic slowdown due to Covid pandemic. Highlighting industrial growth, the Chief Minister wrote iron and steel, cement, power and other sectors witnessed excellent performance.

The letter said that Swami Vivekananda Airport has twice been recognized as the best airport in the non-metro category after just a few years of commissioning of the new terminal in 2012. “We strongly believe that the upgrading of Raipur’s Swami Vivekananda Airport to an international airport and availability of cargo hub will further strengthen the state’s development,” the Chief Minister told the Prime Minister through the letter.

Chief Minister mentioned in the letter that Naya Raipur will be developed as an ideal investment destination for the electronics, IT and biotech sectors. The presence of an international airport in a state will help grow the economy and therefore Chhattisgarh demands international airport status for Raipur airport, the Chief Minister said. It will also encourage global entrepreneurs and investors as well as reduce the migration of people from Chhattisgarh for livelihood. The state and district level export promotion committees have already become functional, showing the readiness for export in the state.

State’s industrial policy has a special focus on food processing industry based on horticulture and minor forest produce, which has huge export potential. The administrative machinery of the state has also completed its preparations to utilize this capability.

Taking a step forward in this direction, 344 acres of land has been provided by the state government to the Airport Authority of India to expand the runway. The length of the runway has been increased to 7500 feet. In principle approval has already been granted to convert the old terminal building into a cargo hub. The state government is willing to bear the expenses involved in the conversion of the old terminal to the cargo handling facility. Declaring Swami Vivekananda Airport as an international airport will be a tribute to the great Saint Vivekananda, the Chief Minister requested the PM.

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