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Where did this 130-ft antenna near Juhu aerodrome come from?

Though the metallic structure has been posing a threat to aircrafts for the last two months, nobody knows where it came from or who built it

The authorities at Juhu aerodrome and their stakeholders are surprised at the sudden appearance of a 130 ft metal antenna on the secondary runway.

The 130-ft antenna stands close to the Juhu Air Traffic Control (ATC) and near the secondary runway 16-24, adjacent to the minaret on the other side
The 130-ft antenna stands close to the Juhu Air Traffic Control (ATC) and near the secondary runway 16-24, adjacent to the minaret on the other side

After the illegal construction of a minaret close to its runway, this structure stands tall at the approach path of the secondary runway, making it more prone to air accidents. No stakeholder has been informed about the structure.

According to Directorate General of Civil Aviation, Government of India (DGCA) sources, this 130-ft antenna like structure doesn’t have a No Objection Certificate from the aviation regulator. Airport officials say this structure has been noticed only in the last two months.

It stands close to the Juhu Air Traffic Control (ATC) and near the secondary runway 16-24, adjacent to the contentious minaret on the other side.

Where’s the NOC?
In order to express their dissatisfaction with the airport operator, all 30 stakeholders had a meeting yesterday with the regional executive director (RED) of Western Region, AAI and the deputy director of DGCA (operations).

Some pilots had recently reported about the metal antenna in the rough ground between the dispersal air taxi area and ATC Juhu. The stakeholders asked the Directorate General Civil Aviation (DGCA) officials
to check whether valid permission within safety regulations and NOC was obtained for it.

Failing the absence of the permission, the structure is jeopardizing the safety for the hover taxi of helicopters, especially in poor visibility. Several helicopters have skids and hover taxi routines even in dispersal areas.

The choppers’ rotor downwash can also pick up foreign object damages and hence a request was made to relocate this metal antenna.

Night landing
Yesterday’s meeting also included discussion of the much talked about night landing facility, which the AAI is going to come up with. “AAI had assured that by September this year they would commence operation using the night landing facility, but we are still only talking about it. Once they commence the work, it will take at least six months to commence the medical operations during the night,” said an officer from Juhu Airport. “They have given a detailed presentation about the night landing facility. Accordingly, the work on it will begin soon. The AAI RED seemed to be positive and hence, we are hoping for the best,” explained an official close to the development.

Officials say
K Hemlata, RED – Western Region, AAI said, “The technical discussions about the night landing system in Juhu Airport were discussed in the meeting with the stakeholders, as scheduled.” However, she denied any discussion about the antenna-like structure in the meeting. Despite repeated attempts, DGCA DG, M Sathiyavathi did not respond to mid-day’s request for comment on the issue.

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