New Delhi/Agartala: The wait for flyers is over as the new integrated terminal building (NITB) of Maharaja Bir Bikram Airport, Agartala has been opened for passengers on Saturday, with the first flight arriving at 10 am. Water cannon salute was accorded to the first flight. The state-of-the-art airport began its services for the public on January 15, 2022.
"This is to inform all our passengers and stakeholders that all Commercial flights have begun operations from NITB from January 15, 2022, and passengers are requested to report for their flight from the New Integrated Terminal Building. The old Terminal Building will no more be used for commercial flight operations," the Airports Authority of India (AAI) said.
The new terminal building was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on January 4. During the inaugural function of the new airport terminal building, Modi had said that Tripura had the potential to become the gateway of Northeast India to usher in all-round development of the region and this airport will help to achieve this.
The commissioning of the new airport terminal was attended by Minister of State (MoS) Kmi Pratima Bhoumik. Talking to the media, she said, "I am delighted to be a part of this historic moment and very fortunate to travel amongst the first passengers." The minister expressed happiness over the commissioning of the Agartala Airport for the people of Tripura and said that very soon international flights will start to Dhaka, Bangkok from here. She was among the first passengers to embark from the airport on Saturday. A local folk dance, Hojaigiri, was also performed on the occasion by artists. The minister, along with the Airport Director, greeted the first arriving passengers with packed sweets.
The terminal building is considered to be one of the best in the region. It features sculptures, paintings, murals and local art-works, which will acquaint travellers with the culture of Tripura.
With enhanced capacity, seamless facilities and spacious interiors, the airport will offer world-class amenities. This airport will now cater to about 1,500 passengers during peak hours, which is three times the old capacity. This will enable over 5,000 passenger footfall per day in the coming days. The check-in counters are now increased to 20 where In-Line Baggage Screening (ILBS) system will provide hassle-free luggage drop facility.
The airport has bigger retail outlets with ample food and beverage counters and a central food court. The airport is equipped with four aero-bridges for seamless embarkment and dismemberment. It also has six parking bays, more than double the previous one. The much-awaited international tag to the airport will soon be a reality once mandatory clearance comes. It will be the third international airport in the North East after Guwahati and Imphal. Very soon, Agartala will be directly connected to Dhaka, Chittagong in Bangladesh and to Bangkok via Guwahati.
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