Representational Image | AFP
Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala cabinet on Wednesday decided to engage a fresh contractor for operating a helicopter for the use of the state government. The chopper hired by Kerala Police in 2021 had been used for ferrying top government officials like the chief minister, DGP among others. It was also used as an air ambulance.
The state has hired helicopters since 2020. In April 2020, the government hired a 10-seater helicopter from Pawan Hans, a central public sector undertaking, without bidding. The contract ended in April 2021. A bid was made in November 2021 for a fresh contract. Delhi-based Chipsan Aviation won the bid for a six-seater chopper.
An open tender will be conducted to choose the new service provider. The opposition has always criticised this move as an extravaganza that the state cannot afford.
The cabinet also decided to provide a government guarantee of Rs 6,000 cr for Kerala Social Security Pension Ltd (KSSPL).