Direct flight services between Delhi and Sikkim commence

Gangtok: Direct flight services between Delhi and Sikkim commenced on Saturday with a SpiceJet aircraft landing at Pakyong airport in the Himalayan state with 57 passengers, officials said.

Commercial flight services to the tabletop airport recommenced after nearly one-and-half years after the private airliner halted its operations between Kolkata and Pakyong in June 2019 due to bad weather conditions and technical problems.

Commercial flight operations to the airport started in October 2018.

A Bombardier Q400 aircraft landed at the airport around noon and flew back to Delhi with 12 passengers on board, they said.

State Health Minister M K Sharma, senior officials of the Tourism Department and the Airports Authority of India (AAI) were present at the airport.

“This was the first commercial flight from Delhi to Pakyong,” a senior tourism official told PTI.

The weather conditions were suitable for the aircraft to land safely on the 1.7 km by 30 m runway, he said.

The direct Delhi-Pakyong flight will boost tourism and also help locals visit Delhi for medical emergencies, Sharma said.

The airport, built by the AAI at an estimated cost of Rs 605 crore, is located at a height of 4,646 feet and is one of the five highest airports in the country.

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