Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday along with Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath inaugurated the Kushinagar International Airport in Uttar Pradesh. It was inaugurated as an endeavour to connect Buddhist pilgrimage sites around the world as well as facilitate the travelers of pilgrims to the final resting place of Lord Buddha. He said, Kushinagar International Airport was the result of decades of hopes and expectations and as an elected representative from Purvanchal, it was time for fulfillment of commitment to people.
Ahead of the inauguration of Kushinagar International Airport, Union Minister of Civil Aviation Jyotiraditya Scindia felicitated Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Uttar Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel and other dignitaries were also present at the event.
Addressing people after inaugurating the Kushinagar International Airport, the Prime Minister said, "Kushinagar International Airport is the result of decades of hopes and expectations. My happiness is two-fold today. Curious about the spiritual journey, I have a sense of satisfaction. As a representative from Purvanchal, it is time for the fulfillment of a commitment."
"This step will give new energy to the aviation sector of India," PM Modi said and also referred to the reforms related to the opening of defense airspace for civil use.
While speaking at an event in Uttar Pradesh's Kushinagar following the inauguration of the Kushinagar International Airport by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Sri Lankan Sports Minister Namal Rajapaksa on Wednesday hailed the "deep-rooted relationship" between the country and India.
"It is a great gesture of PM Modi and especially inviting Sri Lankan airlines to be the first international carrier to land at Kushinagar International Airport. One of the greatest gifts Sri Lanka got from India is Buddhism. Hinduism and Buddhism have co-existed. This deep-rooted relationship that will further strengthen," Rajapaksa said.
The inauguration was marked by the landing of an inaugural flight at the airport from Colombo carrying a Sri Lankan delegation of over 100 Buddhist monks and dignitaries, including a 12-member holy relic entourage.
Where is it located:
The Kushinagar International Airport is strategically located in Kushinagar, Uttar Pradesh, and is located 47 kilometers from Gorakhpur. Gorakhpur, a major town in East UP borders Nepal adding to the strategic importance of the airport.
The Kushinagar International Airport has been touted as a major development project that will push tourism in the state. This will help religious tourists, more especially Buddhists to visit the site from all over the world including countries like Japan, Thailand, Vietnam among many in eastern Asia. It will boost connectivity and tourism, while also helping develop an entire economic ecosystem in the region and create new job opportunities.
The Kushinagar Airport has been built at an estimated cost of Rs 260 crore and was given International Airport status in June 2020. The airport gets a single runway which is 3.2 km (10,000 ft) long and 45 m (148 ft) wide. The apron area of the airport can accommodate 5 Boeing 737 types of aircraft.
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