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Nitin Gadkari assures Rs 200 crore airport at Paradip

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PURI : Promising a slew of infrastructure projects for Odisha after the general elections, Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Shri Nitin Gadkari, announced on Thursday plans to establish an airport in the port town of Paradip, with an investment of Rs 200 crore.

Speaking at an election rally in Krushnaprasad, situated on the banks of Chilika Lake in Puri parliamentary constituency, Gadkari said a decision has already been taken to build an airport in the port city.

Located 125 km from the capital city Bhubaneswar, Paradip is one of the most important commercial ports of the country. The beach with green forest cover, natural creeks and an island is one of the most popular beaches of the state.

Clear blue waters surrounded by green forest cover and its location at the confluence of the river Mahanadi with Bay of Bengal, makes Paradip one of the most sought after beaches of the state

Notably, Odisha, situated on India’s eastern coast, currently relies on just two major airports — the Biju Patnaik International Airport in Bhubaneswar, established in 1962 and serving as the state’s sole international airport, alongside the Veer Surendra Sai Airport in Jharsuguda, which primarily caters to domestic flights.

Additionally, the state government has issued global tenders for the first-phase development, operation, and maintenance of greenfield airport in Puri under a public-private partnership model.

Located near Sipasarubali in Puri district, the Sri Jagannath International Airport will have a capacity of handling 4.6 million passengers per annum (MPPA) in phase 1, with projections of 10.18 MPPA in phase 2 and an additional 16.69 MPPA in phase 3.

The chosen site’s proximity to Puri’s renowned Jagannath Temple and other tourist attractions is expected to significantly enhance connectivity to this important pilgrimage and tourist destination, thereby boosting its tourism potential.

Three major industry players, namely Adani Group, Fairfax and GMR, have shown interest in the development of the Rs 2,203 crore Puri airport.

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