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News Updated From Silchar
 Alliance Air to increase flights to Silchar

GUWAHATI, Jan 28 : The Alliance Air, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Indian Airlines, will fully operationalize the services of ATR-42 aircraft on the Kolkata-Guwahati-Dimapur-Agartala sectors in a six-phased manner. The final schedule of the ATR-42 operation will be chalked out by the last part of March. Addressing a press conference here today, the Managing Director of Alliance Air Manet Paes said that with the introduction of the ATR-42 aircraft, the frequency of air service in the Kolkata-Dimapur route would increase from the existing 4 to 7, three to seven in Kolkata-Aizawl route, 6 to 9 in the Kolkata-Silchar route, 3 to 7 in the Guwahati-Agartala route, 2 to 7 in Guwahati-Lilabari route, 2 to 7 in Guwahati-Silchar route, 2 to 7 in Guwahati-Imphal route and 2 to 7 in the Silchar-Imphal route. The ATR-42 will be pressed into service in the Kolkata-Shillong route from February 15, he said. Paes said that Alliance Air would introduce the ATR-42 aircraft in the Guwahati-Aizawl route thrice a week in the third phase. According to him, the timings of the ATR-42 aircraft connecting the cities of the North-east would be fixed in such a manner that a person coming from either Silchar or Agartala and also Aizawl to Guwahati can take the next available flight to Delhi or Kolkata from the Lokapriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport at Borjhar. He said that Guwahati would be the hub of ATR operation. Paes said that though Alliance Air would face loss in crores due to operation of the ATR, the North Eastern Council has earmarked Rs 175 crore in the 10th Plan as the subsidy to meet the loss.

 Shahnawaz plan for NE flights including Silchar, fails to take wings

SILCHAR, Jan. 18: Union Minister of Civil Aviation, Shahnawaz Hussain’s Christmas gift to the North-east of providing air connectivity to the State capitals and important cities of the region is yet to become operational. In fact, there is nothing new in this package. Even more than a decade back, Indian Airlines and Vayudoot used to operate their flights to 10 and 18 cities of the region respectively . Far-flung towns like Zero, Rupanzo, Pasighat, Along, Kamalpur, Kailashahar, Rupahi, Lilabari as well as Tezpur and Shillong were on the air map. Pawan Hans linked Kohima. The ‘open sky policy’ failed to rope in private airliners on the hinterland routes on the ground of economic viability. Presently, Indian Airlines and Alliance Air flights link Agartala, Aizawl, Dibrugarh, Dimapur, Imphal, Jorhat, Silchar and Tezpur with Kolkata, Imphal and Silchar are linked with Guwahati by twice-a-week flight. The induction of 118-seater Boeing on Silchar-Guwahati route is however has been a revenue-irritant due to only 25 per cent load factor. N.R. Laskar, station manager of Silchar Airlines Office, attributed "poor load factor" to high air fare. Passengers, he added, prefer cheaper day and night bus services on Silchar-Guwahati route. Laskar said Silchar-Imphal-Kolkata Boeing flights six days week are well patronized with optimum load factor. More fights can be provided on this factor, he pointed out. He revealed that time-schedule of the ATR flights which will have daily connections on all sectors in the North-east have not yet been announced by the Alliance Air. Silchar-Kolkata is going to have nine flights a week, besides daily flight to Agartala, for the passengers of the Barak Valley. A task force constituted during the tenure of the Aviation Minister, Mr Ananth Kumar had recommended extension of runways of Silchar, Shillong and Lilabari to accommodate Airbus 320. Quite paradoxically, Indian Airlines favoured Airbus and not ATR aircraft on the ground of economic viability. Even as the runway extensions were going on, the Aviation Ministry reversed its earlier decision "as the new ATR aircraft don’t require longer airfields". This is an instance of how decisions are often taken at the bureaucratic level without proper evaluation of ground realities. By this time, huge sums of money have already been pumped in for runway extensions. A fleet of a French-made 50-seater ATR 42 aircraft are expected to be airborne in another three to four months for North-east connectivity, according to IA sources here. Will these flights be cost-effective? IA estimates loss to the tune of Rs 38 crore a year. But the Airlines has nothing to worry about. The NEC has earmarked Rs 175 crore in the 10th Plan as subsidy to meet the loss. Besides, national transport policy committee had projected 15 per cent increase in traffic volume. Guwahati will be the hub of ATR operations, said Alliance Air managing director, Manet Paes.

 Hailakandi hosts Seminar on Assam’s history since 1947

HAILAKANDI, Jan 17 — A UGC-sponsored national seminar on the History of Assam since 1947 was held at Lala Rural College of Hailakandi district on January 9-10. Large number of research scholars from the various districts of the State participated in it. Vice-Chancellor of Assam University Dr Subhas Chandra Saha inaugurated the seminar. The inaugural function was addressed among others by Ashok Duttagupta, member of the governing body, Dr Kamaluddin Ahmed, retired principal of Karimganj College, Dr MA Choudhury, retired principal of Assam Medical College, veteran economist Bhavataran Bhattacharjee, Monaranjan Sinha, Samarjit Singha, chairman, Lala Town Committee, Dr Ashit Ranjan Bhattacharjee, NH Mazumdar and Dr Jaharlal Sen, principal of Lala Rural College. Dr Kamaluddin Ahmed presented a paper titled Assam Accord 1985 : The Truce that followed the tangle. While discussing the main feature of the agreement popularly known as Assam Accord the paper deals with the origin of the agitation which started with the process of revision of the electoral rolls of the Mangaldai Parliamentary Constituency to hold by-election to fill up the vacancy caused by the demise of late HL Patowari and the social tension that overwhelmed Assam since 1979 by the agitation for detection and deportation of the foreign nationals from Assam which prompted the Central government to conclude the so-called accord with the agitationists. The paper raised the two questions whether the agitation for detection and deportation of the foreign nationals is a sudden development or culmination of a series of such movements held in different phase of the history of Assam since independence and is there any objective basis of the contents the agitationists propagated which caused a sense of fear among the Assamese people that their national identity was threatened due to the existence of foreign nationals as they deemed to be present in Assam. Dr MA Choudhury in his paper titled Healthcare network in Assam 1947-2000, elaborately discussed the health scenario and suggested some measure for the improvement of the present condition. Dr Ashit Ranjan Bhattacharjee presented a paper on Panchayat structure in Assam since 1947 with special reference to its working in the last phase i.e., 1992 to 1997 in Hailakandi district. Amalendu Nag of SS College read a paper on Urban History of Assam since independence with special reference to Hailakandi. The paper discussed the pace of urbanization and its impact in the society of Assam as a whole and Hailakandi in particular. The study is basically an empirical investigation in the knowledge of the subject. Tridib Mahanta of Sibsagar College presented a paper on Sankardeva in the Post-Independent Era : Prof Maheswar Neog’s contribution to the field with special reference to ‘Sankardeva and His times’. Dr Pranayjyoti Goswami of GC College, Silchar, spoke on the History of growth and development of tea industry in Assam. Dr AM Bhuiya presented a paper on Sylheti Nagri in Barak Valley after independence. Merina Islam, a research scholar of Assam University, presented a paper on The emergence of feminist consciousness and the growth of non-governmental women organisation in Barak Valley. This paper is a to study on the various activities of the women organisations in general and non-governmental women organisations in particular, of south Assam. The objective of this paper is to examine the development, aims and objectives of various organisations as well as the ways in which feminist consciousness arose in this area. Abul Hussain Mazumdar submitted a paper on Politics of antagonism in Assam since 1947 and its consequence. The role of NGOs in the development of Barak Valley, Assam (A case study of Hailakandi district) was the title of the paper S Bhattacharjee. Arunima Dey of SS College submitted the paper on Student Activism : A study of the Barak Valley situation 1961. Joynal Uddin Ahmed and Merina Islam jointly presented a paper titled Infrastructure development in Barak Valley of South Assam. Progress of industralisation in Assam since independence was the title of the paper of Suparna Roy of Rabindra Sadan Girls’ College, Karimganj, while Md Nijam Uddin presented a paper titled Hailakandi Jelar Little Magazine O Anyanya Sahitya Samoyiki in Bengali language. On the concluding day, certificates were distributed among the participants in a meeting held under the chairmanship of principal Dr JL Sen.



Submitted by: Himadri R. Choudhury
EMail :
Source : Assam Tribune & Sentinel(News posted on Jan'28,2003)

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