Travel and Tourism Association of Goa (TTAG) has demanded with the Airports Authority of India (AAI) to do away with the clause making deposit mandatory towards slot fee/penalty for charter operators, and also to finalise the slots allocated at Dabolim airport much before the commencement of the charter season.
A delegation of TTAG led by its president Savio Messias met the AAI chairman Guruprasad Mohapatra during his visit to Dabolim airport on Friday in the presence of airport director Bhupesh Chand Hans Negi and other AAI officials.
Messias presented a memorandum to the AAI chairman, requesting him to look into the problems which are being faced at the airport by airlines operators besides passengers.
The AAI in its circular issued on August 7, 2015 has imposed slot fee/penalty of Rs10,000 to 25, 000 on the charter operators over the delays caused by weather and operating conditions at the place of origin, informed Messias and demanded with the AAI chairman to remove the clause that makes deposit towards slot fee/penalty mandatory.
He, however, said that “TTAG has no issue in keeping a slot deposit as a safeguard against the possibility of operators blocking slots and not utilising them.”
He highlighted to the AAI chairman the delay caused to the passengers in clearing the immigration formalities at the airport.
“At the international arrival terminal, out of the 20 allocated desks for E-visas, only 13 to 14 are serviceable and the remaining are unserviceable due to lack of equipment. Sometimes even out of the 13 to 14 desks, only 7 to 8 are serviceable, due to shortage of staff and hence long delays are faced by passengers, especially on Fridays, Saturdays and Sunday morning hours, when two wide bodied aircraft arrive at the same time or one after another,” he said.
He alleged that TTAG has observed lack of cooperation between the AAI and immigration authorities, and added that facilities are lacking at the immigration counters and that is resulting in long queues of the passengers.
The TTAG has demanded that the charter slots should be finalised and allocated by the AAI much before the commencement of the charter season.
The historical slots should be maintained for the chartered flights operating between 8.30 am and 1 pm, but it was observed that during the last season, this facility was withdrawn by AAI, causing a lot of difficulties, said Messias
He further demanded that the timing for the historical slots be reinstated for smooth operation of charter flights and domestic slots should start from 1 pm onwards in order to avoid mixing of passengers with a long vision. A demand to configure and make operational recently commissioned 3 aero bridges in service of international flights arriving at the airport was also put forth.
The TTAG also asked the AAI chairman as to when will be the Western Finger International Departure hall will be made operational.
“We request you to swap the international with domestic security hold area (SHA) as it will be more convenient when the new terminal building is operational and the same will be benefitted in the long run,” added Messias.
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Source:: The Navhind Times