Trichy: Madras Flying Club, one of the oldest flying clubs in the country, was to be shifted from Chennai to Tiruchy. However, even senior airport officials are unsure when the club would start functioning from here, “We have provided office space and other facilities for the club at the Tiruchy airport. Our job is over. They can start functioning anytime,” said Tiruchy Airport Director K Gunasekaran. Beyond this, he refused to divulge details as what was delaying the project.
Sources said that the flying club is unlikely to get permission to shift to any other airport.”This club has to pay more than Rs 1.14 crores to the Chennai International Airport. This was agreed to be settled after starting operations in Tiruchy. So, we gave them permission. Apart from this, AAI (Airports Authority of India) has spent money on providing infrastructure for the club in Tiruchy. They are unlikely to get permission to start in any other city,” a source said.
According to sources, the club has so far transferred only their flight stimulator (equipment used for pilot training purpose) to Tiruchy. “Recently, they shifted the flight stimulator to Tiruchy. Their aircraft are still in Chennai. We don’t know when they will shift,” a source said.
The process has been delayed for almost a year. It was in November last that Gunasekaran along with MFC officials announced launch of operations from Tiruchy. A board of the Madras Flying Club was also placed at the entrance of the airport.
04/11/19 Jose K Joseph/New Indian Express