Why is Kerala opposing the leasing out of Thiruvananthapuram Airport to Adani Enterprises?

Published: August 28, 2020

A resolution has been passed by the Kerala Assembly with the demand for the withdrawal of the decision of the Union Cabinet to lease out the Thiruvananthapuram airport to Adani Enterprises. Earlier, the proposal for leasing out three airports i.e. Jaipur, Guwahati, and Thiruvananthapuram through the PPP model for 50 years has been approved by the Union Cabinet.

Background

  • Adani Enterprises Limited became the highest bidder for the project of leasing. This is not a case of permanent selling of airports. The Airport Authority of India still has ownership of those three airports.
  • In 2019 Adani enterprise took the leasing of three other airports from AAI. So it was going to have a total of six airports i.e. Ahmedabad, Mangaluru, Lucknow, Jaipur, Guwahati, and Thiruvananthapuram.
  • Adani Enterprises won the bidding process conducted in February 2019. Other participants were GMR Airports, Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation, Cochin International Airport Ltd, and Zurich Airport.
  • The Ministry of Civil Aviation stated that the PPP model has developed the infrastructure as well as enhanced revenue in the airports located in Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Delhi, Mumbai.

Kerala’s opposition

Earlier Kerala was given the assurance of its intervention in the matter of privatization or leasing of Thiruvananthapuram airport but the recent announcement came without their prior consent. That is why Kerala has been opposing the bill. The state declared the operation and management of the airport should be handed over to the Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) in which the Kerala government has a stake.

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