The service will cease from September 1
The sole commercial flight connecting Mysore with Bangalore and Chennai will be discontinued with effect from September 1, in what could be a major setback to the region’s connectivity with other business centres.
SpiceJet, which was operating the flight, has indicated that it is withdrawing operations from the city. Confirming this with The Hindu, C. Manjunath, officer in charge of he Mysore Airport, said he received an SMS from the airline’s local representative indicating the closure of operations with effect from September 1. The airline has also cancelled flights from Mysore till August 10.
Mr. Manjunath said services during June and July were erratic as the airline had suspended flights citing operational reasons.
“One of its aircraft was grounded for technical reasons and hence there were frequent cancellations and change of schedule in operations to Mysore,” said Mr. Manjunath.
“I have received an SMS from the airline representative in Mysore, but they have not given anything in writing. I’ve asked them to send an official note indicating the closure of operations,” he added. The airport was upgraded at a cost of nearly Rs. 80 crore in 2010 but has been jinxed since.
There were no flights for over a year after the inauguration. Kingfisher introduced the first commercial service till the airline folded operations. Subsequently, SpiceJet launched services to Bangalore and Chennai from January 14, 2013.
Mr. Manjunath said the flight from Mysore had a high occupancy rate despite the odd arrival and departure timing. The flight would arrive at 2.40 p.m. and depart at 3.30 p.m.
In the last few weeks, the airline changed flight timings to 8.30 a.m. but it had poor patronage, as it did not suit outbound passengers from Bangalore. Meanwhile, Minister of State for Civil Aviation G.M. Siddeshwara is visiting the city on August 2.
Mysore MP Pratap Simha, and local stakeholders including members of the Confederation of Indian Industry and the Mysore Industries Association will meet him to underline the need for air connectivity to Mysore.