Shimla, July 8: Barely a month after its launch, the heli-taxi fare between Shimla and Chandigarh has gone up by Rs 500, from Rs 2,999 to Rs 3,499, officials said on Sunday. This is not all. There is a confusion over its landing site in the Himachal state capital. Officials said the chopper is still landing at the airport at Jubbarhatti, 22 km from here, and not at the Annandale ground, the picturesque flat highland just 3 km from Shimla’s Ridge, as announced by the government soon after the launch of its maiden flight on June 4. Officials told IANS that for boarding the chopper at Shimla, one has to go to the Jubbarhatti airport, which is an hour-long travel from here. It lands and takes off from the Chandigarh International Airport, some 18 km from the city.
Seeing the poor response of the travelers, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, announced on June 18 the chopper would land at the Annandale ground but would take off from Jubbarhatti. The official admitted that the one-way airfare for the tri-weekly service was increased by Rs 500 from July 1 owing to high operational cost. With the launch of the heli-taxi service on June 4, the travel time between Shimla and Chandigarh was reduced to just 20 minutes against four hours by road. (IANS)