Sylhet becomes flydubai's third destination in Bangladesh
A Monitor Report
16 Mar, 2017  |
Passengers coming down from the aircraft after arrival of flydubai inaugural flight _Photo : Monitor
The flydubai inaugural flight was accorded a water cannon salute on arrival (top) and (bottom) Rashed Khan Menon, Minister for Civil Aviation and Tourism, cutting a cake to mark the occasion
: A direct flight of Dubai-based flydubai, codeshared with Regent Air-ways, landed in MAG Osmani International Airport on March 15 that made the airport operational for the first time as an international airport.
Upon arrival, the aircraft was greeted with a traditional water cannon salute at the airport followed by a ceremony at the airport lounge.
A delegation led by Sudhir Sreedharan, Senior Vice President Commercial, GCC, Subcon-tinent and Africa, flydubai was received by Rashed Khan Menon, Minister of Civil Aviation and Tourism, along with local officials from Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism, Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh and local Members of Parliament.
A traditional ceremony took place as the delegation disembarked the aircraft.
The flight marks the start of four times weekly direct service between Dubai and Sylhet, flydubai's third destination in Bangladesh, which will increase to six flights a week from May 16. The operation to Osmani International Airport is in partnership with Regent Airways.
In the ceremony, Rashed Khan Menon, Minister of Civil Aviation and Tourism said the inauguration of international flights from the airport was a milestone and Regent Airways made the codesharing possible with the flydubai.
He said the government has taken a number of steps to upgrade Osmani Interna-tional Airport and a budget has been sanctioned by the Executive Committee of National Economic Council (ECNEC) to upgrade the runway which will be implemented soon.
The minister said the attempt to launch international flights from the airport failed several times earlier but this time it would no longer be a failure. Soon the airport will be connected by many airways flying directly to many destinations.
Dr MA Abdul Momen, former Permanent Resident of Bangladesh to the UN, thanked all concerned on behalf of the Finance Minister and said the Osmani International Airport will soon become a hub of airlines to eastern region.
Air Vice Martial Ehsanul Haque Chowdhury, Chair-man, Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh said the duty of the aviation authority is to provide support to the airlines and the authority is very keen to turn the airport as a true international airport, ensuring all the facilities needed.
He said the airport will soon get a new look with newly-constructed runway, apron and terminal but the authority needs local people's help to expand the airport area and to develop the surroundings.
Speaking at the inaugural programme at the airport, Sreedharan said, "We would like to take this opportunity to thank the Bangladeshi authorities for their support. We began operations to Dhaka and Chittagong at the beginning of 2011, we have seen strong demand for flights to Bangladesh."
"We are confident that our passengers from will benefit from our direct flights to Dubai and beyond, via Dubai's efficient aviation hub connecting over 200 destinations worldwide, specially on to our strong GCC network which is served by up to 650 weekly flights to 18 points," he added.
Thanking Re-gent Airways for their cooperation, Sree-dharan said, "We look forward to the start of this partnership."
Sudhir Sree-dharan, Senior Vice President Commercial for GCC, while talking with the Bangladesh Monitor that time he said, " it a low cost carrier and it has total 174 seat capacity 12 seat for Business and 162 set for Economy.
Since it began flights to Bangladesh, flydubai has carried more than 1.5 million passengers between the two countries. The new services will see flydubai provide up to 27 flights a week to Bangladesh.
Lt Gen (Retd) M Fazle Akbar ndc, psc, CEO, Regent Airway said the codesharing flight from Dubai-Sylhet-Dubai on March 15 started a new era of the history of aviation in Bangladesh as it is the first-ever codesharing flight.
Yasin Ali, Chairman, and Salman Habib Deputy Managing Director, Regent Airways, Saiful Haque, Chairman, Sky Aviation, GSA of flydubai in Bangladesh and Ismail Reza Chowdhury, Managing Director, were present, among others.
Ceremony over, the Minister for Civil Aviation and Tourism declared the inauguration of the international flight service from Osmani International Airport and cut a cake in the lounge.
The flight of flydubai landed at 3.05pm with 140 passengers and returned at 5.30pm with 169 passengers.