Imphal: Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh on Wednesday re-launched helicopter service in the state, with a chopper covering 222 km from Imphal International Airport here to Jiribam near the Assam-Manipur border in less than 30 minutes.
The facility, launched by a private firm which signed an MoU with state transport department to fly its copters till March 31 next year, comes after PSU Pawan Hans discontinued its services in the state in February without citing any reason after launching it in September last year.
The Chief Minister, while speaking on the occasion, emphasised the need for more helicopter services in the state where 90 per cent of the area comprises hilly terrain and several interior areas are inaccessible.
“The helicopter services will be extended to Indo- Myanmar border town of Moreh, Tamenglong and other remote areas of the state,” he said.
The chief minister said a direct flight from Imphal to neighbouring Myanmar’s Mandalay is on the cards, besides increase in the number of flights from the Manipur capital to other parts of India.
He said upgradation of Imphal International Airport is in the final stages.
Landlocked Manipur’s economic lifelines — highways that connect the state with the rest of the country — pass through hill districts, are in bad condition and are prone to blockades due to agitations. (PTI)