New Hyderabad airport begins commercial operations

March 23rd, 2008 - 3:27 am ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Sonia Gandhi

Hyderabad, March 23 (IANS) The new Rajiv Gandhi International Airport at Shamshabad, about 30 km from the city centre, began its commercial operations with the landing of a Lufthansa aircraft early Sunday. The aircraft carrying 276 passengers and crewmembers onboard from Frankfurt, Germany, landed at the new airport at around 12.24 a.m.

All the passengers were given a rousing reception on their arrival at the new airport, which was inaugurated by UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi March 14.

With this the 76-year-old Begumpet airport located in the centre of Hyderabad was officially shut down and some 13 domestic aircraft parked there were flown to the new airport to maker their early morning flights.

The Rs.25 billion airport with the longest run-way in Southeast Asia has been built by GHIAL, a joint venture in which GMR Infrastructure Limited holds 63 percent, Malaysia Airports Holding Berhad 11 percent, AAI 13 percent and the Andhra Pradesh government 13 percent.

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