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Darbhanga Airport: Connecting Bihar to the World

Darbhanga Airport

Welcome to Darbhanga Airport, the bustling aviation hub located in the heart of Bihar, India. As a domestic airport and an Indian Air Force Station, Darbhanga Airport ensures seamless travel for passengers in and around the region. Whether you’re planning a business trip or a family vacation, Darbhanga Airport offers a convenient and hassle-free experience, with a wide range of flights and services to meet your travel needs.

Operated by the Airports Authority of India (AAI), Darbhanga Airport has been a proud contributor to the growth and development of the state. With its strategic location near the NH-105 and NH-57 highways, the airport is easily accessible to travelers from various parts of Bihar.

This article will provide you with valuable insights into the history, infrastructure, airlines, and future developments of Darbhanga Airport. Join me as we explore the exciting journey of this aviation marvel and its significance in connecting Bihar to the world.

Key Takeaways:

  • Darbhanga Airport is a domestic airport and Indian Air Force Station, serving the region of Bihar, India.
  • The airport is operated by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) and offers convenient travel options for passengers.
  • Commercial flights started operating from Darbhanga Airport on 8 November 2020.
  • The airport has a well-developed infrastructure, including a modernized terminal building and a strengthened runway.
  • IndiGo and SpiceJet are the main airlines operating at Darbhanga Airport, connecting passengers to major cities in India.
  • The airport is a participant in the UDAN scheme, providing affordable air travel options for regional connectivity.
  • Darbhanga Airport has witnessed steady growth in passenger traffic and aircraft movements, showcasing its increasing importance in the region.
  • Future developments include the expansion of the airport, construction of a new terminal, and the addition of cargo facilities.

Location and Ownership

Darbhanga Airport is strategically located in Darbhanga, Bihar, India. Situated just at the outskirts of the city, near the NH-105 and NH-57 highways, it offers convenience for passengers traveling to and from Darbhanga. The airport serves as both a military and public facility, providing essential air travel options for the region.

When it comes to ownership, Darbhanga Airport is owned by the Indian Air Force and operated by the Airports Authority of India (AAI). This dual ownership ensures seamless coordination and efficient management of the airport’s operations. The Indian Air Force plays a crucial role in ensuring the security and safety of the airport, while the AAI focuses on providing top-notch services to passengers.

With its strategic location and strong ownership, Darbhanga Airport serves as a key airport in Bihar, contributing to the development and connectivity of the region.

Table: Key Features of Darbhanga Airport

Location Ownership
Darbhanga, Bihar, India Indian Air Force and Airports Authority of India (AAI)

History of Darbhanga Airport

The history of Darbhanga Airport is rooted in the legacy of Darbhanga Aviation, a private airline established by Maharaja Kameshwar Singh Bahadur of Darbhanga in the post-World War II era. The airline operated three former military Douglas DC3 aircraft, providing air travel options for the region until it ceased operations in 1962. However, the airport’s story continued to unfold as it became a part of the Indian Air Force following its acquisition during the Indo-China War in the same year.

Since then, Darbhanga Airport has undergone significant development to cater to both military and commercial aviation needs. The Indian Air Force, in collaboration with the Airports Authority of India (AAI), has worked towards transforming the airport into a modern aviation facility. This includes the establishment of a dedicated runway and the construction of an interim terminal building, enabling the commencement of commercial flights on 8 November 2020.

“The history of Darbhanga Airport showcases its transformation from a private airline venture to a crucial aviation infrastructure facility, serving both military and civilian purposes.”

Indian Air Force Acquisition

The acquisition of Darbhanga Airport by the Indian Air Force in 1962 marked a significant turning point in its history. The strategic importance of the airport during the Indo-China War led to its integration into the Air Force’s operations. Since then, the Indian Air Force has played a vital role in maintaining the airport’s infrastructure and ensuring its readiness for both military and civilian aircraft.

The acquisition paved the way for the airport’s development and its subsequent inclusion in the regional connectivity programs initiated by the Indian government. Today, Darbhanga Airport stands as a testament to the collaboration between the Indian Air Force and the Airports Authority of India, providing essential air travel services to the people of Darbhanga and the surrounding region.

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Year Event
1946 Maharaja Kameshwar Singh Bahadur establishes Darbhanga Aviation
1962 Indian Air Force acquires Darbhanga Airport during the Indo-China War
2020 Commercial flights commence at Darbhanga Airport

Table: Key Events in the History of Darbhanga Airport

Airport Infrastructure

The infrastructure at Darbhanga Airport has undergone significant development to cater to the growing needs of passengers and airlines. The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has invested approximately ₹100 crores in various projects to enhance the airport’s facilities.

An interim terminal building has been constructed, equipped with six check-in counters to accommodate up to 200 peak hour passengers. The terminal provides a comfortable and convenient experience for travelers passing through Darbhanga Airport. Additionally, a parking facility with a capacity of 30 cars is available to cater to the needs of passengers with private vehicles.

The runway at Darbhanga Airport has also been strengthened to accommodate larger aircraft such as the Airbus A320 and Boeing 737. This expansion enables airlines to operate a wider range of aircraft, increasing connectivity and opening up more travel options for passengers in the region.

Infrastructure Projects Facilities
Interim Terminal Building Six check-in counters, capacity for 200 peak hour passengers
Parking Facility Capacity for 30 cars
Runway Strengthening Ability to handle Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 aircraft

The development of Darbhanga Airport’s infrastructure is a testament to the commitment to provide passengers with a seamless and efficient travel experience. These improvements not only enhance the airport’s capacity but also contribute to the overall growth and progress of the region.

Darbhanga Airport UDAN Scheme

The Darbhanga Airport is a participant in the UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik) scheme, which is a regional connectivity program initiated by the Indian government. This scheme aims to enhance regional air connectivity and make air travel more affordable for passengers in underserved areas of the country. Through the UDAN scheme, airlines such as SpiceJet and IndiGo operate flights connecting Darbhanga with major cities like Delhi, Bengaluru, and Mumbai.

The implementation of the UDAN scheme has significantly improved regional connectivity, allowing passengers in Darbhanga and surrounding areas to travel conveniently to important economic and cultural hubs across the country. The availability of direct flights to major cities has not only made air travel more accessible but has also contributed to the economic growth of the region by facilitating trade, tourism, and business activities.

The UDAN scheme has been instrumental in connecting Darbhanga Airport with key domestic destinations, providing passengers with a wide range of travel options. SpiceJet offers flights from Darbhanga to Delhi, while IndiGo operates flights to Bengaluru and Mumbai, among other cities. These airline services have played a vital role in meeting the travel needs of the local population, as well as attracting visitors to Darbhanga for various purposes.

Benefits of the UDAN Scheme

  • Enhanced regional connectivity: The UDAN scheme has improved the air connectivity between Darbhanga and major cities, making it easier for passengers to travel within and outside the region.
  • Affordable air travel: The scheme aims to make air travel more affordable by capping airfare for a certain number of seats on each flight, ensuring that even passengers with limited budgets can avail of the benefits of air travel.
  • Economic growth: Improved connectivity has stimulated economic growth in the region by facilitating trade, tourism, and business activities. It has also attracted investments and created employment opportunities.
  • Enhanced accessibility: The UDAN scheme has helped bridge the transportation gap in remote and underserved areas, allowing residents to access essential services, education, healthcare, and other facilities more easily.

The UDAN scheme has been a significant step towards achieving the government’s vision of providing air connectivity to all regions of the country. It has brought a positive transformation to the aviation sector in India and has empowered millions of Indians with the opportunity to experience the benefits of air travel.

Airlines and Destinations

Darbhanga Airport Airlines

At Darbhanga Airport, passengers have access to flights from two major airlines: IndiGo and SpiceJet. These airlines offer convenient travel options to various destinations, connecting Darbhanga to important cities across India.

IndiGo operates flights to Hyderabad and Kolkata, providing connectivity to passengers traveling to these vibrant cities. On the other hand, SpiceJet offers flights to Bangalore, Delhi, Goa-Dabolim, and Mumbai, allowing passengers to explore these popular destinations for business or leisure purposes.

With these airline services, passengers can easily plan their travels and reach their desired destinations from Darbhanga Airport. Whether it’s for business meetings, family visits, or leisurely getaways, these flights provide essential connectivity and contribute to the growth of regional travel in the area.

Flight Routes from Darbhanga Airport:

  • IndiGo: Darbhanga to Hyderabad
  • IndiGo: Darbhanga to Kolkata
  • SpiceJet: Darbhanga to Bangalore
  • SpiceJet: Darbhanga to Delhi
  • SpiceJet: Darbhanga to Goa-Dabolim
  • SpiceJet: Darbhanga to Mumbai
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Passengers can conveniently book their flights to these destinations, enjoying the benefits of air travel from Darbhanga Airport. The availability of multiple airlines and flight routes enhances accessibility and connectivity for travelers in the region, making Darbhanga Airport an important hub for domestic travel.

Passenger Statistics

Let’s take a closer look at the passenger statistics for Darbhanga Airport. According to the Airports Authority of India (AAI), the airport served a total of 614,114 passengers from April 2022 to March 2023. This indicates a steady growth in passenger traffic at the airport, highlighting its importance as a key aviation facility in the region.

In terms of aircraft movements, Darbhanga Airport recorded a total of 4,170 flights during the same period. These movements include both incoming and outgoing flights, emphasizing the active nature of the airport and the increased connectivity it offers to passengers.

As for cargo tonnage, Darbhanga Airport handled a total of 271 tons of cargo during the specified time frame. While passenger traffic remains the primary focus at the airport, the handling of cargo demonstrates its capability to support commercial and logistical activities in the region.

Year Passenger Traffic Aircraft Movements Cargo Tonnage
2022-2023 614,114 4,170 271 tons

These passenger statistics reaffirm the increasing popularity and significance of Darbhanga Airport. As the airport continues to develop and expand its infrastructure, we can expect even greater numbers in the future, contributing to the growth and prosperity of the region.

Significant Growth in Passenger Traffic

The passenger traffic at Darbhanga Airport has experienced significant growth in recent years. The airport’s strategic location and improved connectivity have attracted more passengers, making it an essential hub for travel in the region.

  • The growth in passenger traffic can be attributed to the commencement of commercial flights at the airport in November 2020.
  • The UDAN scheme has played a crucial role in enhancing regional connectivity and making air travel more accessible for passengers in and around Darbhanga.
  • The presence of major airlines like IndiGo and SpiceJet offering flights to popular destinations has further boosted passenger numbers.

With ongoing development projects and future expansions planned for Darbhanga Airport, it is expected to continue attracting more passengers and facilitate seamless travel experiences for both domestic and international travelers.

Future Developments

The future of Darbhanga Airport looks promising with plans for expansion and the addition of new facilities. The government of Bihar has acquired additional land near the airport to accommodate its growth. The Airports Authority of India (AAI) is currently preparing a Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the construction of a new passenger terminal, a modern air traffic control (ATC) tower, and cargo facilities near NH-27. These developments aim to enhance the airport’s capacity, improve passenger services, and enable the handling of larger volumes of cargo.

Once the new passenger terminal is constructed, it will provide a more comfortable and efficient travel experience for passengers. With a capacity to handle a larger number of peak hour passengers, the new terminal will feature state-of-the-art facilities, including spacious check-in counters, security checkpoints, and comfortable waiting areas. The expansion plan also includes the construction of a new ATC tower, which will enhance air traffic management and ensure the safe and efficient movement of aircraft.

The addition of cargo facilities at Darbhanga Airport will enable the transportation of goods and enhance trade in the region. These facilities will be equipped with modern infrastructure and handling equipment to facilitate the smooth flow of cargo. With the expansion and development of the airport, Darbhanga will become a hub for both passengers and cargo, fostering economic growth and connectivity in the surrounding areas.

Planned Development at Darbhanga Airport

As part of the future development plans, the government and the AAI are also considering the possibility of renaming the airport as the “Mahakavi Kokil Vidyapati Airport” in honor of the famous Maithili poet, Vidyapati. This renaming aims to preserve and promote the rich cultural heritage of the region.

Future Developments Status
New Passenger Terminal Under planning and design
Air Traffic Control Tower Under planning and design
Cargo Facilities Under planning and design
Airport Renaming Under consideration

The future developments at Darbhanga Airport are expected to significantly contribute to the growth and development of the region. With improved infrastructure, enhanced passenger services, and the addition of cargo facilities, Darbhanga Airport will continue to serve as a vital transportation hub, connecting the city of Darbhanga to major domestic and international destinations.

Nearby Airports

When traveling to or from Darbhanga, there are several nearby airports that provide alternative options for passengers. These airports offer convenient connections and are under the jurisdiction of the Airport Authority of India (AAI). Here are some of the nearby airports to Darbhanga Airport:

  1. Jay Prakash Narayan Airport: Located in Patna, Jay Prakash Narayan Airport is approximately 115 kilometers away from Darbhanga. It serves as the primary airport for the state of Bihar and offers domestic and international flights.
  2. Gaya Airport: Situated in Gaya, around 200 kilometers from Darbhanga, Gaya Airport is an important gateway for Buddhist pilgrimage as it provides easy access to Bodh Gaya, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
  3. Bihta Air Force Station: Located in Bihta, near Patna, Bihta Air Force Station is an airbase of the Indian Air Force. While primarily a military facility, it also handles limited civilian flights.
  4. Raxaul Airport: Situated in Raxaul, near the Indo-Nepal border, Raxaul Airport is mainly used for chartered flights and serves as an important point of entry for trade and tourism between India and Nepal.
  5. Purnea Airport: Located in Purnea, approximately 180 kilometers from Darbhanga, Purnea Airport is an upcoming airport in the region. It is expected to boost connectivity and facilitate economic growth in the surrounding areas.
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These nearby airports provide additional travel options for passengers in and around Darbhanga, enhancing connectivity and convenience.

Table: Comparison of Nearby Airports

Airport Location Distance from Darbhanga Facilities
Jay Prakash Narayan Airport Patna 115 km Domestic and international flights
Gaya Airport Gaya 200 km Buddhist pilgrimage access
Bihta Air Force Station Bihta Near Patna Military and limited civilian flights
Raxaul Airport Raxaul Near Indo-Nepal border Chartered flights and trade hub
Purnea Airport Purnea 180 km Upcoming airport for enhanced connectivity

Conclusion

Darbhanga Airport, located in Bihar, India, serves as a vital aviation facility that offers convenient travel options for passengers in the region. With the implementation of the UDAN scheme, the airport has witnessed a significant increase in passenger traffic, solidifying its position as an essential gateway for both domestic and international travel. The continuous development and expansion of the airport’s infrastructure further enhance its capacity to accommodate growing demands.

Darbhanga Airport, operated by the Airports Authority of India (AAI), has made remarkable progress since its commercial flights commenced in November 2020. The airport boasts a runway length of 2,743 meters, capable of handling larger aircraft such as the Airbus A320 and Boeing 737. It also features an interim terminal building with six check-in counters, providing a seamless and comfortable experience for approximately 200 peak hour passengers.

As a participant in the UDAN scheme, Darbhanga Airport has attracted major airlines like SpiceJet and IndiGo, offering regular flights to prominent cities such as Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Hyderabad, and Kolkata. This regional connectivity program has contributed to the airport’s increased passenger traffic and strengthened its position as a crucial transportation hub.

Looking ahead, Darbhanga Airport has ambitious plans for its future development. The airport’s expansion efforts, including the construction of a new passenger terminal, air traffic control tower, and cargo facilities, will bolster its capacity and improve passenger services. These developments, coupled with the possibility of renaming the airport as the “Mahakavi Kokil Vidyapati Airport,” demonstrate the commitment to further enhancing connectivity and driving economic growth in the surrounding areas.

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