VVIP arrivals hit regular flights at TIA

KATHMANDU: Arrival of VVIPs for the Asia Pacific Summit scheduled to be held in Kathmandu from November 30 to December 3 has hit regular operations at Tribhuvan International Airport.

The airport which reels under heavy air traffic even on normal days saw a shutdown on Thursday as authorities welcomed State Counsellor of Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen.

“The airport was shut for 40 minutes to ease arrivals of the dignitaries during afternoon,” said TIA Spokesperson, Pratap Babu Tiwari, “We did not halt regular flights for long as the two planes carrying the VVIPs landed back to back within an hour.”

Regular domestic and international flights scheduled to land at country’s only international airport were held in mid air for an average of 30 minutes, informed Tiwari.

However, none of flights were diverted to other airports and TIA resumed normal operations at around 12:10 pm, informed TIA Director Suresh Man Singh.

Authorities do not plan to halt regular operations on Friday as there are no scheduled VVIP movements.

“However, the airport will see arrivals of VIPs and their flights have landing priority,” according to Singh.  Regular flights might face a short duration hold but the airport won’t be shut for VIP landing, he added.