Agartala Airport

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Agartala Airport
আগরতলা বিমানবন্দর
Agartala Airport Departure Terminal.jpeg
IATA: IXAICAO: VEAT
Summary
Airport type Public
Owner/Operator Airports Authority of India
Serves Agartala, Tripura, India
Location Singerbhill
Elevation AMSL 47 ft / 14 m
Coordinates Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found.
Website www.aai.aero
Map
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Runways
Direction Length Surface
ft m
18/36 7,500 2,286 Asphalt
Statistics (2014)
Passenger movements 601,146(Increase2,62%)
Aircraft movements 7,845
Source: AAI,[1][2]

Agartala Airport (IATA: IXAICAO: VEAT) is a domestic airport located 12 km (6.5 nautical miles) northwest of the city of Agartala, the capital of the state of Tripura in India. It is administered by the Airports Authority of India (AAI).[3] It is the third busiest domestic airport in northeast India after Imphal[4] and is proposed to be upgraded as an International Airport. A modern Air Traffic Control tower is being set up for the purpose.[5][6] Presently IndiGo operates 4, SpiceJet 3 and Air India operates 1 daily scheduled passenger flight to & from this airport.

History

The airport was designed and built in 1942 by the Maharaja of Tripura Bir Bikram Kishore Manikya Bahadur.[7] It had one primary runway, 05/23, which is now used as a taxiway to Runway 18/36.

During World War II, the airport was used by the 4th Combat Cargo Group (4th CCG) of the United States Army Air Forces Tenth Air Force, flying Curtiss C-46 Commando transport aircraft over Burma. The airport was used as a supply point from which the unit air-dropped pallets of supplies and ammunition to the advancing Allied forces on the ground.[8]

The 4th CCG operated from the airport during December 1944 and January 1945, after which it moved to Chittagong.

In 2015, Airports Authority of India started the upgradation of airport to international standards. [9]

The airport's control tower
Air India Taxing in runway 18-36
Agartala Airport

Connectivity with the city

Bus: Agartala Airport is approximately 11.5 km away from the main bus stand of the city. One can find a good number of private buses, one can also hire auto-rickshaws.[10]

Rail: Railway connection is limited to Agartala Railway Station located approximately 15.4 km from the airport.

Airlines and destinations

Passenger Airlines

Airlines Destinations
Air India Kolkata
IndiGo Bangalore, Delhi, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Imphal, Kolkata
SpiceJet Bangalore, Chennai, Guwahati, Kolkata

Accidents and incidents

  • 30 December 1949: a Douglas C-54A-DO cargo aircraft of Bharat Airways flying from Agartala airport to Calcutta airport crashed in Comilla, East Pakistan. The aircraft had a technical problem and crash landed in a village; all seven crewmembers died after the aircraft exploded, and many villagers were also injured.
  • 9 July 1958: a cargo Douglas C-47A-75-DL of Indian Airlines flying from Agartala Airport to Dhaka-Tejgaon Airport crashed near Dhaka, East Pakistan. All three crewmembers died. During the preflight briefing the pilots were told about poor weather en route, but no weather deterioration at Dhaka was reported. Last contact with the flight was at 08:05 GMT when entering the Dhaka Control Zone. The cause was reported as structural failure in the air.
  • 29 March 1959: A Douglas DC-3 of Indian Airlines with 20 passengers and 4 crewmembers crashed 56 km west of Silchar killing all 24. The DC-3 was operating on a flight from Calcutta to Imphal via Agartala and Silchar. The aircraft took off from Agartala at 10:10 for a 50-minute flight to Silchar. En route weather was poor (thunderstorms in the area southwest of Silchar). The aircraft didn't arrive at its destination and was found to have crashed due to structural failure.
  • 21 April 1969: a Fokker F27 Friendship of Indian Airlines took off from Agartala Airport with 40 passengers and 4 crew bound for Khulna Airport, East Pakistan. It faced strong down currents while approaching Khulna. The crew tried to fly through the thunderstorm at low level but lost control in severe downdrafts and the aircraft crashed near the airport, killing all 44 people on board.
  • 7 June 1970: A Fokker F27 of Indian Airlines flying with 34 passengers and 4 crew members overran the runway at Agartala after it touched down at a higher than normal speed 2,775 feet from the threshold; however, none of the passengers or crew members lost their lives. The aeroplane was later written off.[11]

See also

References

  1. "TRAFFIC STATISTICS - DOMESTIC & INTERNATIONAL PASSENGERS" (jsp). Aai.aero. Retrieved 31 December 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. List of busiest airports in India by passenger traffic
  3. Civil Airport Agartala at Airports Authority of India
  4. Traffic stats for 2015
  5. http://zeenews.india.com/news/india/agartala-airport-to-be-made-international-airport_1504063.html
  6. http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2014-02-07/news/47126400_1_agartala-airport-cpi-the-airport-authority
  7. tiprasa.com/article/viewcomm/asp?identity=701
  8. Maurer, Maurer. Air Force Combat Units Of World War II. Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama: Office of Air Force History, 1983. ISBN 0-89201-092-4
  9. Upgradation of Agartala airport to start in Feb 2016: Minister
  10. http://www.theindiatravelguide.com/test/agartala.htm
  11. http://www.aviation-safety.net/database/airport/airport.php?id=IXA

External links

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Air Force Historical Research Agency.

Picture gallery