Kerala Assembly adopts unanimous resolution against privatisation of Trivandrum airport

South India

The Congress-led oppsition United Democratic Front backed the resolution with a dissent note over the appointment of a firm linked to the Adani, the winner of the bid, as legal consultant for the bidding process.

The Kerala Assembly has unanimously passed a resolution urging the Central Government to review its decision to hand over operations of Trivandrum International Airport to Adani group despite opposition over the appointment of a firm linked to the Adani, the winner of the bid, as legal consultant for the bidding process.

Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala said that the opposition was supporting the resolution in spite of the unholy deal with Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas, co-owned by Paridhi, daughter of Cyril Shroff and wife of Karan Adani, son of Gautam Adani as it was against the privatisation of the airport.

Senior Congress leader said that the government owned Kerala State Industrial Corporation (KSIDC), which participated in the bid, had lost the bid as the rate quoted by it was leaked to the Adani group to win the bid.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who moved the resolution, denied any unholy deal with the Adani-linked firm. He said that the firm was not involved in deciding the bid rate. Moreover, the company had signed an agreement of no-conflict of interest.

Earlier, Vijayan had written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking his intervention to reconsider the decision to "hand over the management and operation of the Trivandrum International Airport to a private bidder".

In a letter, the Chief Minister said that a meeting of leaders of all political parties in the state was convened through video conference and "the overwhelming view that emerged in the meeting, barring a lone voice to the contrary, was that given the unique place the Trivandrum International Airport has in the history of the State, its management and operation needs to vest with the State government".

At the meeting of leaders of political parties in the state, all parties except the BJP opposed the decision concerning the airport.

The Union Cabinet has approved the proposal to lease out Thiruvananthapuram and two other airports through Public-Private Partnership (PPP) for "operation, management and development" to Adani Enterprises Ltd, who was declared as the successful bidder in global competitive bidding conducted by the Airports Authority of India, for a period of 50 years.

Later, VD Satheesan moved a no-confidence motion against Pinarayi Vijayan government in the assembly. The discussion over the motion is continuing in the assembly.

Image Credit: The Hindu


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