The government of India is all set to add five new towns to the airport map of India. This has been done with the view to connect small towns and cities better with the rest of the country.
In September last year, the Airports Authority of India stated that it was going to build 50 low-cost airports. With greater connection and accessibility in mind, the government has been aiming to start many new regional airlines to connect the relatively remote parts of India with the rest of the country.
Therefore, the new aviation policy is eyeing to construct airports in smaller cities and towns. A major aspect of the project is to support both regional airlines and the airports where these airlines will function.
These are the five towns where new airports will be built in the first phase.
1. Belgaum (Karnataka)
The Belagavi Airport is known to be one of the oldest airports in the state. Today, it is connected with only two cities, Bengaluru and Mumbai. The sole airline connecting this region to the rest of the country is SpiceJet. After a close down in 2011, the airport resumed functionality a year later.
2. Tezu (Arunachal Pradesh)
Approval for the development of an airport here was passed in around 2009-10, and even though the runway and terminal building was set to be constructed by 2014, several protests from the locals delayed the project. No commercial airlines have visited this place and the completion of the construction is expected by January 2016. Following which, Tezu shall be connected to the rest of the country.
3. Jharsuguda (Odisha)
The development of the airport here will be done in two phases. The first phase will involve renovation of the existing airport to make it suitable for smaller aircraft and the second phase of construction will aim for a fully-fledged airport.
4. Hubli (Karnataka)
Though the plan to upgrade the Hubli airport was first approved in 2005, it was only in 2013 that the Karnataka government and AAI finally signed a memorandum of understanding to develop it. Currently two airlines are functional from here – Air Pegasus and TruJet.
5. Kishangarh (Rajasthan)
Launched in September 2013, the completion of the project has been delayed owing to protests and shall be done post its original estimated deadline, June 2016.
Hopefully, these projects will be completed on time and will make accessibility across the country easier.