Jharkhand will get its second commercial flight airport at Deoghar, a place of religious importance, in the second week of July.
The airport will be the second airport in the state after Ranchi.
Sources in the Deoghar district administration informed that the tentative date for inauguration of Deoghar airport has been fixed by the Prime Minister’s Office on July 12.
“We expect the visit of the SPG group for inspection of the airport and other facilities in the next week of June,’ said the senior district administration official preferring anonymity.
Former chief minister and BJP national vice-president Raghubar Das, while addressing media at Deoghar, had announced that Modi would be inaugurating the airport on July 12 after offering puja at Baba Baidyanth Dham.
“We are ready as far as infrastructure is concerned for the operation of passenger flight service. A trial run of the IndiGo flight on June 7 was found satisfactory on all fronts – taking off and landing. We are yet to get the dates of the inauguration. But it will happen in early July,” said Deoghar airport director Sandeep Kumar Dhingra.
The airport official also informed that initially there would be flights from Deoghar to Delhi, Bombay and Bangalore.
“The number of flights will increase after allocation of slots from the airport authorities and DGCA,” said the official.
Significantly, the IndiGo 180-seater Airbus took off to Calcutta from Deoghar airport as a team of experts from Air Authority of India and the DGCA oversaw the operation.
The airport has been constructed to handle Airbus A-320 and A-321 type of aircrafts that can land on a runway, which is 2,500 meters long and 45-meter width.
“The airport has four parking bases for A-320 and A-321 and has six check-in counters, a departure conveyor, and two arrival conveyor belts. X-rays, security equipment, and CCTVs have also been installed inside the terminal. The airport has a peak hour handling capacity of 200 passengers. It will give a boost to the regional connectivity in the Santhal region,” said the airport director.
With its strategic location, the Deoghar airport will provide air connectivity to people from Dumka, Gonda, Banka, and the neighbouring state of Bihar.
The Deoghar airport has installed solar energy and water harvesting systems as sustainability measures.
Spread in a vast area of 650 acres, the external design of the terminal building is inspired by the structure of Baba Baidyanath Temple.
The terminal also has 24-hour medical assistance for passengers. The airport has been built at an estimated cost of Rs 400 crore.