Editorial

Development hijacked

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 12/29/2019 12:06:08 PM IST

 By the new year January 2020, an executive order issued by the district administration to those who have illegally occupied or encroached upon government land allotted to the Airport Authority of India(AAI), will seek to reclaim the lands for expansion and development of Dimapur airport. The airport has been deprived of needed land for expansion and infrastructure development. This has led to Dimapur airport being downgraded to the level where it has remained for the past 30 years. During these decades, most airports in the region especially lesser known airports have come up with the best facilities. Better or improved facilities inspire air travellers and this may lead to increased flight frequency. Dimapur airport has been around since Second World War and it was in the early 70s that civilian aircrafts began operation. At one time, the erstwhile Indian Airlines operated daily flights on the Dimapur-Kolkata route and Delhi-Guwahati-Dimapur route. When big jets were introduced, Dimapur airport could only handle the ageing Boeing 737 and the later introduction of Airbus 319/A 320 owing to restriction of land needed for the airport runway. Passengers emplaning at Dimapur have to walk on foot to board the Air India flight while Air IndiGo provides a bus for passengers. Since expansion could not be done due to lack of area, in contrast, an airports like Dibgrugarh grew. Dibrugarh airport has two aerobridges and situated over 386 acres and the length of the runway is 7500 feet. Dimapur airport has been reduced to an area of around 300 acres out of the 621.58 acres acquired by the government. This is as per the figure provided by the district authorities. According to the deputy commissioner, an area of 621.58 acres was acquired for development and expansion of Dimapur airport. A major slice was occupied by the Assam Rifles(ARTC) and CRPF unit. Another portion near river Chathe measuring around 34.67 acres was encroached. Notably, the district authorities had revealed that one person who encroached what could have been land for expansion of the runway, had manipulated his land patta document from Dag 97 to Dag No.38 and Dag No.40. It was also revealed the encroacher manipulated the area by mutating it to 22 pattas and over which four concrete structures have come up. As in earlier cases involving land record and survey, it was revealed that the allotment file pertaining to the encroached area is untraceable. All such offences are taking place rampantly even as “visionary Nagas” especially the politicians love to sound fantastically futuristic about the 21st century. Unfortunately, the vision( or mirage) for 2030 is hollow as they don’t really know what they’re talking about. Taking the people forward means providing right inputs(not some copy-paste ideas) ; ensuring that the rule of law prevails and that needed land which belong to the government be made available for infrastructure development. The rule of law has been circumvented by a nexus of corrupt politicians-bureaucrats and offenders. Airport land has been systematically encroached as the national highway and even the lands belonging to the Northeast Frontier Railway(NFR) at Dimapur railway station. It is hoped that the cabinet will also discuss and deliberate upon encroachments on NH and railway lands in Dimapur and take a firm step to evict those who have blockaded the right of the future generations.

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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