[ Bengia Ajum ]
ITANAGAR, 26 Mar: The state government has decided to discontinue the helicopter service between Naharlagun and Guwahati (Assam) from 1 April onwards.
The decision has been taken in view of the poor passenger turnout on this route, following the start of flight services from the Hollongi airport. Also, the ticket price for the flight service is cheaper compared to the price for helicopter service, making people choose the first as a mode of transportation.
The civil aviation department has opted to shift the base for the Naharlagun-Guwahati-Tawang helicopter service to Guwahati. “We are planning to shift only one helicopter to Guwahati. The helicopter will make two trips daily for four days and one trip for two days, every week, from Guwahati to Tawang,” Civil Aviation Secretary Swapnil Naik told this daily.
“Passengers who wish to travel to Tawang from Itanagar will have to travel to Guwahati by FlyBig flight service and catch the helicopter from there,” he said, adding, however, that “the other two helicopters will continue to be based in Naharlagun and operate on other routes, as per the daily schedule.”
The chopper service on the Naharlagun-Guwahati-Tawang route had started from September 2009 onwards with the introduction of the second Mi-172 helicopter.
Some of the important places to where chopper service is available from Naharlagun are Mechukha, Pasighat, Roing, Khonsa, Changlang, Tezu, Namsai, Ziro, Daporijo, Aalo, Yingkiong, and Mohanbari, etc.