PM Opens New Terminal Building at Veer Savarkar Airport, Port Blair
PM Opens New Terminal Building at Veer Savarkar Airport, Port Blair

NEW DELHI: On a momentous occasion, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi unveiled the state-of-the-art New Integrated Terminal Building at Veer Savarkar International Airport, Port Blair. Through a virtual conference, the Prime Minister emphasized the significance of this development in meeting the growing demand for increased passenger capacity. With an estimated construction cost of approximately Rs 710 crores, the new terminal building is designed to accommodate around 50 lakh passengers annually.

During his address to the audience, the Prime Minister acknowledged the enthusiasm surrounding the Union Territory and highlighted the collective aspiration for an expanded airport facility. He also expressed his desire to personally witness the joy and delight radiating from the faces of the citizens. Furthermore, he pointed out that the need for a larger airport was voiced by those desiring to visit the Andaman Islands.

Underlining the demand for improved airport facilities in Port Blair, the Prime Minister revealed that the previous terminal had the capability to handle 4000 tourists, whereas the new terminal has increased this capacity to 11,000. Additionally, the airport can now accommodate up to 10 planes simultaneously. He emphasized that the influx of more flights and tourists will generate abundant employment opportunities in the region, further bolstering Port Blair's Ease of Travel, Ease of Doing Business, and connectivity.

Highlighting the significance of inclusive development, the Prime Minister addressed the historic neglect of the Adivasi and island regions in India. He emphasized that the present government, in the past nine years, has rectified past mistakes and ushered in a new model of comprehensive development termed 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas.' This model encompasses the holistic progress of every region, section of society, and essential aspects of life, such as education, health, and connectivity.

The Prime Minister underscored the remarkable progress achieved in Andaman and Nicobar Islands during the last nine years. Comparing the budget allocation, he mentioned that the previous government allocated Rs 23,000 crores in the same time frame, while the present government allocated around Rs 48,000 crores. He further highlighted improvements in essential services, such as the connection of 50,000 households to piped water and the provision of banking facilities through One Nation One Ration Card. The Prime Minister credited the current government for establishing a medical college in Port Blair, expanding internet connectivity through undersea optical fiber, and renaming various islands to commemorate national heroes.

The Prime Minister praised the positive impact of these infrastructure developments on tourism in the region. Improved mobile connectivity, healthcare facilities, airport amenities, and road networks have contributed to a substantial increase in tourist footfall, with numbers doubling since 2014. Furthermore, he expressed his delight that Andaman has become a shining example of development and heritage coexisting harmoniously, symbolized by the hoisting of the national flag at the same spot where Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose once did. The Prime Minister attributed the success of these initiatives as a source of inspiration for the youth of the country.

While acknowledging India's immense potential over the past 75 years of Independence, the Prime Minister lamented the adverse effects of corruption and dynastic politics on the country's progress. He criticized opportunistic politics based on casteism and corruption, urging a shift towards the development of common citizens. The Prime Minister hailed the strength of the Indian youth in defense and entrepreneurship, emphasizing the need for justice and recognition of their contributions.

Concluding his address, the Prime Minister stressed the collective responsibility to dedicate efforts toward the nation's development. He highlighted the challenges along the path of progress but expressed confidence in finding effective solutions. The Prime Minister expressed optimism that the ongoing development work in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands would strengthen the entire region, propelling it to new heights.

Background: The government's focus on enhancing connectivity infrastructure has resulted in the inauguration of the New Integrated Terminal Building at a cost of approximately Rs 710 crores. This significant addition will play a pivotal role in expanding the island UT's connectivity. With a built-up area of approximately 40,800 sqm., the new terminal building has been designed to handle approximately 50 lakh passengers annually. Furthermore, an apron capable of accommodating two Boeing-767-400 and two Airbus-321 aircraft has been constructed, enabling the parking of ten aircraft simultaneously.

Inspired by nature, the architectural design of the airport terminal resembles a shell-shaped structure, reflecting the surrounding sea and islands. The new terminal incorporates several sustainable features, including a Double Insulated Roofing System to minimize heat gain, skylights for ample natural sunlight, LED lighting, and low heat gain glazing. Rainwater harvesting, on-site sewage treatment, and a solar power plant have also been implemented to ensure minimal impact on the islands' environment.

As the gateway to the pristine Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Port Blair is a sought-after destination for tourists. The spacious New Integrated Terminal Building will significantly boost air traffic, enhance tourism, create employment opportunities for the local community, and contribute to the region's economy.

PM Modi to Inaugurate Port Blair Airport Terminal Building on Tuesday

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