Shillong, March 19: Defence authorities have agreed to part with 32 acres of their land for the expansion of the Umroi airport, and another 0.339 square km for the construction of a flyover, the Meghalaya Assembly was informed today.
Replying to queries during question hour, revenue minister R.C. Laloo said the state government had received intimations from the defence authorities in December 2012 about their willingness to give away 32 acres of their land for Umroi airport expansion.
Apart from this, the defence authorities have also agreed to part with another 0.339 square km land for the construction of a flyover on National Highway 44, which would pass through the Shillong cantonment area.
However, Laloo said, the state government would have to allot land of equal area to the defence authorities in exchange for the two plots. “The process is on and we are negotiating with the defence authorities,” he said, replying to a question raised by UDP legislator Paul Lyngdoh.
For years now, the state government has been requesting the Union defence ministry to part with 32 acres of land belonging to the army’s Umroi cantonment for the airport’s expansion. Laloo said according to data available, the defence establishment has 2,096.12 acres of land in and around Shillong.
To a query by Hill State People’s Democratic Party legislator Ardent Miller Basaiawmoit on whether the defence land in the state was given on lease, Laloo said there was no record with the government to confirm it.