Civil Aviation

Maharashtra government inks deal with Mumbai pilot who built aircraft on his rooftop

Amol Yadav’s six-seater plane has the aviation regulator’s approval, but it has not yet been tested.

The government of Maharashtra on Monday signed a massive deal with the company promoted by a commercial pilot who had developed an aircraft on the terrace of his building. Reports said the deal is worth Rs 35,000 crore, but Scroll.in has not independently confirmed this figure.

Amol Yadav of Thrust Aircraft Pvt Ltd was in the news after his aircraft was displayed at a “Make in India” event in Mumbai in February 2016, six years after he started building it.

However, Yadav’s airplane, which was approved by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation in November 2017, has not yet been tested. He said a few components are with the Customs Department. “Once they are fitted [into the aircraft], we will have the official test flight in March or April,” he added.

The Memorandum of Understanding was signed in the presence of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Yadav’s company at the ongoing “Magnetic Maharashtra: Convergence 2018” global investors’ summit. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated the event on Saturday.

Under the deal signed to promote the “Make in India” initiative, the Maharashtra government will give Thrust Aircraft 157 acres in Palghar district’s Kelwe region, around 140 km north of Mumbai. A factory will be set up on the land to build the six-seater aircraft Yadav developed and help turn Palghar into an aviation hub, the Hindustan Times reported.

The aircraft bears the registration number VT–NMD after the initials of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.

Under the deal, Yadav has the responsibility to build the aircraft and appoint an agency to develop the facility on the land in Palghar. The government will provide “funds for basic amenities, etc,” he said.

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