Aviation Top Stories

Scindia shares vision to make IGI first global hub

Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport could soon become India’s first global hub of India, reports TOI. To make this happen, the Indian government is collaborating with Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL), Tata Group airlines led by Air India, IndiGo along with other stakeholders.

“As a novel idea we are trying to develop that (at IGIA) with one or two airlines so that we can provide seamless transfers for international to international, international to domestic and vice versa, and domestic to domestic passengers,” said Union Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia.

Scindia shares vision to make Delhi IGI Airport India’s first global hub, says request for air-train being evaluated. We are trying to progress this as soon as possible to be able to provide wonderful (global connectivity) options to our travellers, which is not the case today, Scindia told ToI in an interview. It is “work in progress” with both Scindia and aviation secretary Rajiv Bansal having held several meetings with stakeholders on the issue.

The government singlehandedly can’t make the Delhi airport a global hub, instead both airlines and airport operator have to do their bit. Becoming a hub airport requires mega home airline/s to offer direct connectivity to rest of the world on wide body aircraft. Also, the airport operator DIAL has to offer a big and efficient transit area for seamless transfers.

To better facilitate the transfer of flyers between terminals, Delhi airport needs an air train. Currently, travelling between Terminal 1 and Terminal 3/2 takes up a lot of time by road during peak traffic hours. In view of this, DIAL is said to have sought civil aviation ministry’s permission to commence the global bidding for the about INR 2,500-crore air train that will link T1, Aerocity, T3/2 with a partially underground, elevated and on surface track.

For the air train, DIAL is also looking at offering concession to a third party which will bear the cost of implementing the project and earn revenue through means like advertising, as per sources. Passengers do not have to buy tickets for using the air trains.
On DIAL’s request for the air train, Scindia said that they are evaluating that. “This comes into the whole multi-modal logistics issue as well. We are in discussions with them and are looking at Gati Shakti and logistics plan. Couple of the stakeholders will have to sit together to try and develop a model based on which this project can be executed,” the minister explained.

We are looking at Delhi Metro and see how that advantage can be accrued. There are access issues which we are trying to resolve,” he added.
Scindia also affirmed that the Delhi airport, currently the 10th busiest airport in the world, is at 7 crore passengers annually and will soon touch 10 crore. You are in the league of a JFK, Chicago, he said, adding that the fourth runway will become operational early next year and the Asiad ’82-era T2 will be demolished to make way for a new terminal much before the end of this decade.

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