Indian flights unaffected by strike

Feb. 2, 2006 at 8:29 AM
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BOMBAY, Feb. 2 (UPI) -- Day Two of an Indian airport workers' strike has not affected air travel, though trash and filth Thursday littered many ground facilities.

Thousands of protesters angry at privatization plans for the New Delhi and Bombay airports blocked entry and exit points at one New Delhi airport terminal, but flights arrived and left on time at all the nation's airports, the Press Trust of India said.

Besides filthy and largely non-functional restrooms as well as garbage-strewn concourses in New Delhi's airport, passengers had to carry their own luggage.

Trade unions blasted Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel for "selling the country" and threatened the ruling coalition -- of which left-wing parties are a part -- that its survival could be at stake.

Patel announced Wednesday that the GMR-Fraport consortium won the bid for modernization of the New Delhi airport by offering authorities 45.99 percent of revenues, while the GVK-South Africa combine bagged the Bombay airport project by offering 38.7 percent of revenues to the government.

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