The government has launched an International Air Connectivity Scheme (IACS) scheme with the objective of enhancing air connectivity between certain North-Eastern states of the country and selected international destinations to promote socio-economic growth, Minister of State for Civil Aviation V K Singh said today.
In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha, he said the scheme was supported by the state governments. The state governments of Assam, Manipur and Tripura have identified routes connecting Guwahati, Imphal and Agartala with selected international destinations viz. Bangkok, Dhaka, Kathmandu, Yangon, Hanoi, Mandalay, Kunming and Chittagong.
Development and up-gradation of airports to international standards was a continuous process undertaken by concerned airport operators from time to time depending upon commercial viability, traffic demand, availability of land etc.
To date, there were two international airports in the North-East Region at Guwahati and Imphal which are operated by the Guwahati International Airport Limited (GIAL) and the Airports Authority of India (AAI) respectively.
GIAL and AAI both have undertaken construction of the New Integrated Terminal Building (NITB) and other associated works at their respective airports to improve services including, an increase in passenger handling capacity. In addition, the AAI has taken up the following development works to boost international connectivity to/from North Eastern Region:
–The new terminal building at Agartala Airport has been designed as an integrated terminal keeping in view the future requirement for international operation; and
–Construction of a New Integrated Terminal Building for 2.4 Million Passengers Per Annum (MPPA), at a cost of around Rs.500 crore has been undertaken at Imphal Airport to augment passenger handling capacity, which has been declared as an International airport.