SEVA Trust UK Chairman Mr Charan Kanwal Singh Sekhon made a special visit to Punjab and held meetings with Senior management of Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), MP for Amritsar Mr Gurjeet Singh Aujla and senior reps of Amritsar Vikas Manch (ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤਸਰ ਵਿਕਾਸ ਮੰਚ) to push for London Amritsar direct flights.
Mr Sekhon held a meeting with SGPC involving Senior Vice President of SGPC Mr Raghujit Singh Virk, Mr Avtar Singh, Secretary of SGPC and Mr Sukhwinder Singh Engineer (PA to President of SGPC Mr Gobind Singh Longowal). He presented a memorandum requesting SGPC to pass a formal resolution on behalf of all Sikhs and the institutions they represent and send this resolution to the Ministry of Aviation, Indian Govt. and Punjab Govt highlighting the real need of direct air connectivity of the Sikh Holy City of Amritsar with London.
A further meeting was held at the Information Centre of Shiri Harimandir Sahib (Golden Temple) attended by Mr Gurjit Singh Aujla, MP for Amritsar, and from Amritsar Vikas Manch (AVM) NGO, President Professor Mohan Singh, Patrons Dr. Charanjit Singh Gumtala,Er. Daljit Singh Kohli, Principal Kulwant Singh Ankhi, General Secretary Er. Manjit Singh Saini, Member Mr. Michal and others were present. Mr Sekhon outlined the joint efforts of SEVA Trust UK and AVM led joint campaign in the UK and he thanked MP Aujla British MP Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi and other British MPs for their huge support for the Parliamentary Launch Campaign for direct fights that took place at the British Parliament in 2018 that re-ignited the long pending demand by millions of Sikhs, Punjabi Indian diaspora in the UK, Canada and the US.
Mr Sekhon said the Indian Govt and the Ministry of Civil Aviation are very well aware of the fact that there is a genuine need for direct flights for London-Amritsar route but looks they don’t want to address this issue. Whilst Air India is continuing to operate on many loss making routes wasting tax payers’ money including Gujrat to Newark (via London) route, they are not prepared to introduce Amritsar London flight that will be hugely profitable as already proved by Amritsar Birmingham direct flights data. All Passengers especially the elderly and family with small children have been suffering for years with up to 12 hours’ stressful journeys via roads from Punjab to Delhi. Furthermore, so many NRIs are losing lives or getting injured in road accidents on Punjab Delhi highways, In spite of a clear need for Direct international flights from Amritsar and many hollow assurances by the Indian Govt, no one has shown real desire to address this issue which is really unfortunate.’’ There is an urgent need for a strategic and joint approach involving all stakeholder, community organisations and elected representatives in the UK, Canada and the USA and working closely with AVM and other NGOs, I will continue to work hard on this issue, said Sekhon.
Manch President Prof. Mohan Singh said, we are grateful to Councillor Sekhon & SEVA Trust UK for supporting AVM & best efforts for better and direct air connectivity from the UK to Amritsar and the north Indian corridor. Manch members thanked him for his sincere efforts to take up the matter of direct international flights with the British and Indian leaders during their last year visit to UK for the launch of parliamentary campaign in London.
Joint Press Conference involving Amrtisar MP Aujla, SEVA Trust UK Chairman Sekhon and Amritsar Vikas Manch