Jaffna International Airport to open today | Daily News

Jaffna International Airport to open today

The much awaited opening of the Jaffna International Airport (JIA) will take place today heralding a new chapter in the Sri Lankan aviation history.

Under the first stage flights would be operated to Indian destinations and also local airports that include Colombo, Batticaloa and Mattala.

Reliance Air, a subsidiary of Air India has confirmed that they will operate director flights between Chennai and Jaffna thrice a week. “This would be from November 1,” an official from Air India in Colombo said. Depending on the traffic we will add more frequency and additional destinations.” The India based airline is also keen to operate flights to both Batticaloa and Colombo. A test flight from India landed at the new Jaffna International Airport on Tuesday ahead of the formal opening today.

FitsAir Sri Lanka’s first and only private airline to be licensed for International Cargo Operations by the Civil Aviation Authority Sri Lanka (CAASL) will also operate flights from Jaffna to both local destinations and to Indian destinations as well.

FitsAir is the only airline apart from the national carrier to have own ground handling operations at the Bandaranaike International Airport.

The Palali Airport which operated as a military airbase has been upgraded at a cost of Rs. 2.25 billion under the development project. During time Air Ceylon operated, there were direct flights between Chennai and Jaffna but was stopped with escalation of the conflict.

Meanwhile an official from the Indian consulate in Jaffna said that special arrangements have been made to issue Indian visas. Sri Lanka immigration will also deploy around 15 officers for JIA operations.

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