NAC suspension turns Manthali airport into a veritable pasture

Ramechhap, October 15:

The Manthali Airport — the only airport in Ramechhap district — in use for 29 years, has turned into a grassland after the Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC) halted its service.

Citing decline in number of passengers, the NAC stopped its flights since May and removed its office from the third week of September. Villagers of more than 10 VDCs had contributed with labour to construct the airport in 1979. The airport, spread in 53 ropani of land, is no longer the place to land and take off planes, but has come in handy for the fodder collectors.

Madan Adhikari of Salu VDC said they had carried stones on the back to construct the airport from a faraway distance. “The number of passengers decreased on the ground that the NAC failed to offer a good service.” According to Adhikari, the airport remaining in a sorry state has worried him.

Officer of Manthali Airport Kedar Satyal said the airport has been rendered useless after NAC planes stopped flights. A survey to convert the airport into a regional had been conducted some time ago, he said.

District-based organisations have requested the private airlines to resume flights in Airport. But it has not yield results yet.