Sikkim: SpiceJet suspends all flights to Pakyong Airport
SpiceJet has decided to suspend all flights to Pakyong Airport near Gangtok from October 30 “due to operation requirements”, to the consternation of the Sikkim government and tourism stakeholders.
SpiceJet is the only airline that operates flights out of Pakyong, 28km from Gangtok.
In a letter to the director of Pakyong Airport, Brijendra Singh, the deputy general manager (east) of SpiceJet, did not expand on what “operation requirements” necessitated the suspension of flights.
“Spicejet has decided to suspend flight operation out of Pakyong Airport from 30th Oct. 2022 till further notice. This is due to operation requirements,” said the letter.
Airport authorities said they did not know why the flights to and from Pakyong had been suspended. SpiceJet operates Pakyong-Calcutta and Pakyong-Delhi flights. “We have not been told in detail about the reasons for the suspension, apart from what is mentioned in the letter,” said an official.
Source, however, said the probable reason for the suspension could be a consequence of a recent mishap involving a SpiceJet aircraft flying between Goa and Delhi that had to make an emergency landing in Hyderabad after smoke was detected in its cabin.
“Following the incident, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (the country’s civil aviation regulator) had directed SpiceJet to carry out analysis of engine oil samples from its Bombardier Q400 fleet and other inspections,” said the source.
SpiceJet uses aircraft from its Q400 fleet for its operations at Pakyong.