No change in Mumbai airport name: Praful Patel

April 2nd, 2008 - 5:55 pm ICT by admin  

Mumbai, April 2 (IANS) The Ministry of Civil Aviation has denied reports it has given any permission to the Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL) to change the name of Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport here. It has also rubbished allegations that the statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji in the airport premises is being shifted from its present location. The Chhattrapati Shivani International Airport (CSIA) is under renovation by the GVK consortium.

The directions issued by Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel make it clear that “no changes are to be made to the airport which hurt local sentiments” while carrying out upgradation and modernization of the CSIA (Mumbai Airport).

Some opposition members expressed apprehensions in the Maharashtra assembly here Wednesday that there was a move to change the name of the Mumbai airport and move the Shivaji statue to another location.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s Gopinath Munde said that removing the Shavaji statue would hurt the sentiments of the 100 million people of Maharashtra. The statue was unveiled a few years ago by former prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee in the presence of Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray.

Water Conservation Minister Ajit Pawar, nephew of Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, assured the assembly that Patel has not accepted any such proposal nor would the statue be shifted.

Patel, in a separate statement, refuted allegations about the change in the name of the airport and the location of the statue.

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