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Amritsar airport tops country in terms of passenger growth

The data revealed that the total passengers this year have reached around 18.6 lakh at the Amritsar airport. This includes 13.5 lakh domestic and 5.1 lakh international as compared to the total of 12.9 lakh (8.4 lakh domestic plus 4.4 lakh international) passengers from April to January in 2016-17.

punjab Updated: Mar 20, 2018 11:28 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Amritsar
Amritsar airport,Sri Guru Ram Das Jee International Airport,Amritsar international airport
The airport is at the fourth place in the country so far with 44.4% growth in the total passenger traffic. (HT File )

The Sri Guru Ram Das Jee International Airport has beaten other international airports in the country in the first ten months (April to January) of 2017-18 with highest domestic passenger growth of 61% and aircraft movement of 53% in total and 78% in domestic flights, according to the data of the Airport Authority of India (AAI) on its website.

However, the airport has got third place with 74% increase in domestic passenger traffic while the Srinagar and Madurai airports have got first and second ranks with 90.6% and 90.1% increase during January only, reads the data.

The data revealed that the total passengers this year have reached around 18.6 lakh at the Amritsar airport. This includes 13.5 lakh domestic and 5.1 lakh international as compared to the total of 12.9 lakh (8.4 lakh domestic plus 4.4 lakh international) passengers from April to January in 2016-17.

The airport is at the fourth place in the country so far with 44.4% growth in the total passenger traffic (International and domestic) compared to the corresponding period in 2016-17 till January, as per the data. It said, 14,724 flights, including inbound and outbound, operated from the airport from April to January in 2017-18 as against 9,621 flights during the same period in 2016-17.

Passenger traffic 2.23 lakh in January

The data also shows that the total passenger traffic increased up to 50.3% (2.23 lakh) in January 2018 which was 1.49 lakh in January 2017 at the airport here.

Pleased with the data, aviation analyst and overseas secretary for Amritsar Vikas Manch (NGO), Sameep Singh Gumtala, said the main factor of continuous increase in the domestic passenger traffic at the airport is launching of new domestic flights last year. He said a total of 2,137 passengers travelled on the newly started Amritsar-Nanded twice a week flight. Occupancy on this flight is more than 80% and the frequency of the flight should be increased immediately, he added.

He said domestic traffic has been the main driver of growth for the airport, the contribution for the increase in international footfall should also not be overlooked. “Traffic grew by 9.1% with 59,256 passengers, up from 54,322 a year earlier in January 2017. At present, seven international destinations are directly connected with Amritsar that connects other International destinations from foreign airports. A big number of domestic passengers also transit via Delhi and Mumbai for international destinations and it is our demand from the AAI that more direct international flights should be started for the growth of international passenger traffic,” said Gumtala.

Amritsar airport director, Manoj Shanoria, could not be contacted for comments despite repeated attempts.

First Published: Mar 20, 2018 11:27 IST