Privatisation Plan: Will Adani Group Take Over Bhubaneswar Airport?

New Delhi/Bhubaneswar: As proposed by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her Budget speech, the government plans to mop up Rs 20,000 crore by selling its stakes at several airports in the country to private players.

The airports lined up for privatisation include the Biju Patnaik International Airport in Bhubaneswar. The other airports are in Jewar (near Noida), Navi Mumbai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Amritsar, Indore, Raipur and Varanasi among others.

As per plans, the government may also club operations at the Bhubaneswar airport with the one in Jharsuguda as both share “distinct characteristics and travel traits”, official sources informed.

Also Read: 19 Airstrips & Airports Of Odisha Included In UDAN Scheme Document

This privatisation plan is also in keeping with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mantra of “monetise” and “modernise”.

Earlier in December last year, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) Chairman, Arvind Singh announced that the second-phase of bidding for airports will start by the first quarter of mid-2021.

Though the government is yet to disclose the potential bidders for the Bhubaneswar airport, speculation is rife that the Adani Group may be a stronger contender.

The Gautam Adani-run conglomerate has already bagged contracts for six airports — Lucknow, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Mangaluru, Thiruvananthapuram and Guwahati. It won the biddings by huge margins during the first round of airports privatisation under the Narendra Modi government in February 2020.

Of these, AAI has handed over three airports — Lucknow, Ahmedabad and Mangaluru — to Adani Group after signing the concession agreements.

Also Read: Int’l Airport In Puri: Centre’s Green Light To AAI For Pre-Feasibility Study

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