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Bhattarai tells CAAN not to give Himalaya Airlines ground handling right now

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File: A Himalaya Airlines aircraft

Kathmandu, September 27

Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Minister Yogesh Bhattarai has directed Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal to stop implementing its decision about providing the right of self-ground handling to Himalaya Airlines.

Currently, the government-owned Nepal Airlines Corporation has been carrying out ground-handling responsibilities in all airports of the country including the only international airport in Kathmandu. Besides the NAC, only Air India and Thai Air have been exercising this right at the Kathmandu airport.

As the authority also allowed Himalaya Airlines to do ground handling on its own recently, the minister summoned the authority’s Director General Rajan Pokharel to his office on Monday and minutely check if the company has required economic and technical facilities to carry out the task.

In response, Pokhrel said the company had applied for the right, and the right was given after considering all needful facts.

However, the minister said CAAN officials should also consult the ministry while making decisions that are significant at the national level.

A senior official in the ministry says the minister, however, wants to deprive Thai and India airs also of the right and make the national flag carrier company, NAC, responsible for all ground-handling tasks across the country so that its income would increase.

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