Make seaplanes in India, says Nitin Gadkari

Updated: Dec 11, 2017, 09:39 IST | A Correspondent

Preparing to boost air connectivity to remote and unconnected destinations, Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari requested Japanese firm Setouchi to manufacture seaplanes in the country

Preparing to boost air connectivity to remote and unconnected destinations, Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari requested Japanese firm Setouchi to manufacture seaplanes in the country following the successful trial runs of the firm's aircraft here. Assuring support, Gadkari said, "What I will request you (Setouchi) is that you need to start to Make in India... We will ensure that the land is available to you near the air strip (and) you can manufacture your (sea) planes in Nagpur."

Nitin Gadkari
Nitin Gadkari

He was speaking at the second phase of the seaplane trials at the Girgaum Chowpatty off the city coast yesterday. The trial flight, conducted by SpiceJet, was carried out with Setouchi's 10-seater Kodiak Quest 1000 seaplane. He said that there is a lot of potential for seaplanes in the country and domestic production could bring down manufacturing costs.

He added that norms for seaplanes are expected to be finalised in three months in consultation with the civil aviation ministry. "Raju (referring to civil aviation minister PA Gajapati Raju) calls it a seaplane, I call it a flying boat. If it is a seaplane, it is controlled by the civil aviation ministry. If it is a flying boat then it is under my control," he said.

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