Sikkim’s newly-constructed airport, the Himalayan state’s first, will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 23 September.
It is located about 30 km from the state capital of Gangtok and has been built at an elevation of about 4,700 feet at an estimated cost of Rs 350 crore.
The airport will boost Sikkim’s economy by making the state more accessible for tourists. Currently, tourists headed for Gangtok by air have to fly to Bagdogra and travel for more than four hours (128 km) by road to reach the city.
When the first commercial plane lands on the airport, it will become the 100th operational airport in the country. According to a news report, SpiceJet has been granted permission to fly to the airport from Kolkata under the Civil Aviation Ministry’s regional connectivity scheme Ude Desh Ka Aam Nagrik.
A 19-seater Dornier 228 aircraft of the Indian Air Force had made a successful landing at the Airport in Sikkim on 6 March this year. On 11 March, a 78-seater Spicejet test flight landed at the airport for the first time.
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