A 72-seater passenger aircraft crashed on the runway at Pokhara International Airport in Nepal. Prime Minister of Nepal, Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ officially inaugurated the Pokhara Regional International Airport (PRIA) in western Nepal’s tourist hub of Pokhara on Jan 1.
Airport was built with Chinese assistance
The airport was built with Chinese assistance through a soft loan of USD 215.96 million agreement signed in March 2016 as part of the Nepal-China Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) cooperation.
Airport designed and built with high quality Chinese engineering standards
Chinese Embassy Charge de Affaires Wang Xin said that the airport is designed and built as per Chinese standards, which reflects the high quality of Chinese engineering, and symbolises the national honour of Nepal.
The Prime Minister said that the airport will be a major boost to the tourism industry and improve connectivity for the landlocked country. The International flights are expected to begin in the second week of February.
Air crash within two weeks of inauguration
Just 2 weeks after the inauguration of Nepal’s third international airport, a horrifying incident took place. On Sunday morning, a 72-seater passenger aircraft crashed on the runway at Pokhara International Airport in Nepal. Rescue operations are underway, and the airport is closed for the time being.
According to reports, the plane carried 68 passengers and four crew members. 42 dead bodies were recovered from the crash site until now. Six children are said to have died in the crash.
Five Indians were among 10 foreigners that were killed, reports said.
According to the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN), Yeti Airlines’ 9N-ANC ATR-72 aircraft took off from Kathmandu at 10:33 am on Sunday.
While landing at the Pokhara airport, the aircraft crashed on the bank of the Seti River between the old airport and the new airport.
Rescue operations are ongoing. Details of the accident are yet to come.