Free Ticket: Sukhbir, with 50 others, on Chandigarh’s first int’l flight to Sharjah!

Chandigarh Airport

Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal with a 50-member delegation of politicians and bureaucrats will be aboard the first international flight from Chandigarh airport — to Sharjah on September 15 at our expense.

From there, they will go to Dubai, 40km away, by road, soliciting investment in Punjab.

The 186-seat flight of government carrier Air India Express will have two other delegations, one led by the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) MLA from Dera Bassi, NK Sharma, who, being a real estate baron himself, will lead a 30-member delegation of property developers.

Another 30-member delegation of industrialists will be onboard with the same aim. They will return on Saturday, September 17, by the same AI Express flight that will operate on Mondays, Thursday and Saturdays. The rest of the seats are for general passengers.

Official sources said the Home Ministry will set up the immigration counter by September 1 to facilitate the international travellers flying out of Chandigarh and for all in-bounds passengers.

With the operationalisation of international flights, the long-standing demand of the Punjabi diaspora would be fulfilled.

 All seats are in economy class. And, though low-cost carriers charge extra for anything served on board, the delegates have food boxes and beverages included in the fare.

For the Sukhbir-led delegation, the public expense on the flight alone will thus be Rs 7.5 lakh.

The government will pick up the entire visit’s tab for only the Sukhbir-led delegation, underlined the deputy CM’s media adviser, Jangveer Singh, adding, “All three delegations will meet the ruling family of Dubai and other trade associations. The motive of the visit is to give a fillip to direct trade between the UAE and Punjab.”