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Bihar Revives Plans to Operationalize Regional Airports for Enhanced Air Connectivity

By Neeraj Kumar

Patna: The Bihar government is taking renewed steps to operationalize half a dozen airports under its control, aiming to enhance air connectivity across the state. Previous announcements to start flights from these airports did not progress, but the increasing demand for air travel has spurred new initiatives. In a recent pre-budget meeting with the central government, Bihar presented this plan, hoping for a positive response in the upcoming budget.

The state government’s initiative raises hopes of connecting airports in about nine cities with regular air services. Proposals have been made to the Center to develop facilities at more than six regional airports. The Bihar government has committed to providing the necessary land and has directed the building construction department to assess the current state of these airports, potential future work, and estimated costs, with a report to be submitted to the government.

Bihar currently has 15 airports, including six domestic or regional airports, three airbases, and three runways. Domestic flights are currently operated from Patna and Darbhanga, while international flights are handled at Gaya, all managed by the Airport Authority. The regional airports under state control include Saharsa, Munger, Raxaul, Bhagalpur, Muzaffarpur, and Begusarai. Military airbases are located at Bihta Air Force, Purnia Airport, and Sabeya Airport in Gopalganj, while runways exist in Birpur, Chapra, and Katihar.

The Bihar government has proposed developing airports in cities such as Muzaffarpur, Bhagalpur, Begusarai, Munger, Dehri on Son, Saharsa, Forbesganj, Raxaul, Nalanda, and Gopalganj. This initiative aims to cater to the growing number of air travelers and provide them with air services from their own cities, significantly boosting regional connectivity.

The author is a Patna based journalist

 

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