Aviation News

Domestic Cargo Services A Non-starter At Trichy Airport, Infra News, ET Infra


<p><em>Representational image</em></p>
Representational image

TRICHY: It has been more than 10 years since Trichy international airport’s old terminal was converted into a cargo terminal, but domestic cargo services still remain a non-starter thanks to the absence of a dedicated terminal. This despite the fact that the city is host to a clutch of higher educational institutions, public sector units, heavy industries and hospitals which have regular consignments to ship.

The public sector units include Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited, Ordnance Factory Trichy and Heavy Alloy Penetrator Project. Educational institutions such as National Institute of Technology, Indian Institute of management, Bharathidasan Institute of Management, Indian Institute of Information Technology, National Law School and Central University of Tamil Nadu function from Trichy and surrounding regions.

Francis Ruben of Freightic Aviation said they receive regular inquiries for consigning domestic cargo. In the absence of the facility at Trichy, customers send their consignments via Madurai and Chennai, he said. Unlike export cargo, domestic cargo is mostly of general nature.

“Companies need to send and exchange crucial engineering parts, hospitals must send blood samples to various parts of the country for analysis, educational institutions must send research papers and related important documents,” says S A Sayeed, president of Express Courier Operators’ Association. He said the postal department desperately needed domestic cargo operations for its routine operations. “Arms are being consigned through Madurai airport as there is no domestic cargo terminal in Trichy. So, it is important to launch the facility at Trichy immediately. It will help the AAI earn more revenue,” he added.

Ruben said that international flights are unable to take export cargo due to high passenger occupancy. “If domestic cargo operations are launched, international cargo can be redirected via Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Mumbai from Trichy through domestic flights. Even when the flights are full, we can carry a minimum 500 kg per flight. So, we can carry about five tonnes of cargo on nine flights daily,” he added.

When contacted, Trichy airport director P Subramani told TOI that they are working for setting up the terminal. “We had requisition from IndiGo Air which is operating almost all the domestic flights. So, required action will be taken soon,” he added.

  • Published On Dec 14, 2023 at 04:01 PM IST

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