UP government signs lease agreement with AAI to transfer land for Ayodhya Airport

In a big leap towards the construction of Ayodhya International Airport, named Maryada Purushottam Shri Ram International Airport, the Uttar Pradesh Civil Aviation department signed a lease agreement with the Airports Authority of India (AAI) on Thursday, April 7 to fortify the transfer of 317.86 acres of land to the latter to give shape to the project.

The land lease agreement was signed in the presence of UP CM Yogi Adityanath. The airport is tentatively planned at a location 10 km from the Ram Janmabhoomi premises where work on the Ram Temple is going ahead on a war footing.

UP government signs lease agreement with AAI to transfer land for Ayodhya Airport

In a bid to push the temple town of Ayodhya on the global tourism map further and establish it as the global spiritual capital, CM Yogi Adityanath, who has envisioned the makeover of Ayodhya as ‘Navya Ayodhya’ with a series of ongoing development projects, emphasized on the need to get the proposed international airport operational by the time the idol of Ram Lalla is placed in the ‘Garbh Griha’ (Sanctum Sanctorum) of the upcoming Ram Temple at the Ram Janmabhoomi premises — expected by the end of 2023.

“Lord Ram had returned to Ayodhya (after a 14-year exile) in Pushpak Viman. When his idol is placed and consecrated in the Sanctum Sanctorum of the upcoming temple on Janmabhoomi, we should try to see that the airport is also operational,” said the CM while exhorting the authorities concerned to complete the project at the earliest.

The proposed airport will be constructed under the Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) of the Centre. “The state government will provide all possible assistance in ensuring timely completion of the project,” the CM said exhibiting his government’s intent to bring both the airport and the Ram temple to concrete shape before the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

Ayodhya airport must be operational before Ram Temple, says UP CM Yogi Adityanath

The agreement signed on Thursday, April 7 will be part of the first phase in which the state government plans to get small aircraft, essentially ATR, operational.

The second and the third phase will witness the expansion of the project to an additional 497 acres of land making the project functional for bigger aircraft. The total land which has been identified by the state government for the project is to the tune of 821 acres.

As per official sources, while the state government signed the lease agreement for 317.85 acres of land with the AAI, around 86 acres of land is yet to be acquired by it.

The agreement signed on Thursday, April 7 will be part of the first phase in which the state government plans to get small aircraft, essentially ATR, operational.

Moreover, the state government has released an amount to the tune of INR 1008.77 crores for land acquisition and development of the Ayodhya International Airport. In the first phase, the state government plans to establish air connectivity between Ayodhya and Hindon airbase.

“Air connectivity was essential as it catalysed development, even more for a place like Ayodhya which is associated with the faith of millions of people,” said CM Yogi, asserting that the state government has coordinated well with central agencies including AAI in increasing the number of operational airports in UP significantly in the last five years.

Ayodhya, one of the most important Hindutva nerve centres, had attained centre stage immediately after the BJP came to power with a landslide win in 2017. The Yogi government had subsequently sought to give a facelift to the city by coming up with a series of projects, including the airport which was formally announced in December 2018.

Ayodhya, one of the most important Hindutva nerve centres, had attained centre stage immediately after the BJP came to power with a landslide win in 2017.

The bids for the construction work were finalised a long time back and Bengaluru-based Vishal Infrastructure, which had bagged the bid for the construction of the runway, has started its work under the supervision of the AAI.

ALSO READ – AAI has begun the construction of Ayodhya airport

According to AAI officials, the first phase of the project will be completed in around one-and-a-half to two years for which INR 150 crore has been allocated. In the first phase of the project, a 2250 m runway for ATR-72 aircraft has to be constructed.

It may be pointed out that there is already an airstrip in Ayodhya. The Centre has sanctioned INR 250 crore towards the Ayodhya airport project.

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