A swanky new international airport, constructed by a private builder, was thrown open for commercial use but not without some drama and excitement.
A Lufthansa flight from Frankfurt, LH 753, was scheduled to be the first flight marking the beginning of commercial operations at the new airport but two SpiceJet aircraft took the credit accidentally when they made some unscheduled arrival last night.
The two SpiceJet flights SG 397 from Ahmedabad and SG393 from Mumbai landed 40 minutes ahead of schedule, at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport. The flights were scheduled to land at 0050 hrs and 0055 hrs respectively but landed at 0015 and 0020 hrs, GMR Group .
“The Hyderabad-bound SpiceJet flights from Ahmedabad and Mumbai were rescheduled. We were not aware of rescheduling of the two flights at the Ahmedabad and Mumbai airports,”officials said.
However, the ceremonial welcome, as per the schedu led programme, was given to the passengers of the Lufthansa flight which touched down at 0030 hrs midnight, officials added. The passengers of Lufthansa flight, 276 passengers in all, were accorded a welcome by GMR group chairman G M Rao. A number of passengers expressed great admiration for the new airport, saying it can rival any international airport in global standards. A number of them said that they were proud to have one such airport in the country.