Bihar’s Darbhanga Airport records highest growth under UDAN scheme
Darbhanga airport in Bihar has been recognised as the top airport in India under the UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik) regional air connectivity scheme, according to an official from the Airports Authority of India (AAI). Since its launch on November 8, 2020, until April 15, 2023, the airport has handled 14,13,510 passengers and 9,610 flights.
The number of passengers at Darbhanga airport has shown significant growth, increasing from 1,53,232 in the financial year 2020-21 to 6,19,586 in FY 2021-22 and reaching 6,16,058 in FY 2022-23. During this period, the airport witnessed 6,81,945 arrivals and 7,06,931 departing passengers.
To accommodate the rising passenger and flight handling capacity, expansion work has already begun at the airport. An additional 2.42 acres of land provided by the Indian Air Force (IAF) will be utiliSed to expand the existing terminal area of 1400 square meters by an additional 1700 square meters. The expanded facility will have a peak hour passenger handling capacity of 600, a security hold area capacity of 660 passengers, 11 check-in counters, four security checks, two X-ray machines, two hand baggage X-ray machines, two conveyor belts, and four boarding gates.
Furthermore, the IAF will undertake the groundwork for setting up an instrument landing system (ILS) on 24 acres of land to facilitate night landings and cope with adverse weather conditions. AAI has granted permission to the IAF for this purpose.
The construction of a permanent terminal building on 54 acres of land will soon commence, along with the installation of the ILS system. The process of appointing a consultancy firm to prepare the detailed project report for the airport’s expansion is already underway.