Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be inaugurating the new terminal of Maharaja Bir Bikram (MBB) Airport in Agartala on January 4, Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb said on Saturday.
Addressing a gathering at a church in Mariamnagar in West Tripura on the occasion of Christmas, the CM said Union Minister for Civil Aviation Jyotiradiya Scindia will also be accompanying the Prime Minister.
Tripura airport is the second-busiest one in North East India after Lokapriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport in Guwahati. The airport was established as a military airstrip in 1942, the land for which was gifted by the king of Tripura Maharaja Bir Bikram Manikya Bahadur. The airport was renamed after him in July 2018.
The new terminal is being built at a cost of Rs 500 crore as part of the Airport Authority of India’s initiative to develop airports across the North East. It will be capable of handling 4-5 times more passengers than the existing one which has a capacity of just 500 travellers.
With 19 flights operating daily, the existing terminal has become saturated. The new structure is spread across 25,000 square meters and includes six bays, one hangar, 20 check-in counters, 5 custom counters, 10 immigration counters, apron for six aircraft parking bays, provisions for link cabs, inline baggage system, a solar power unit capable of handling most power requirements of the installation, and a self-sustainable sewage treatment plant. It will also sport miniature sculptures of Tripura’s 7th century’s mammoth, and bas relief sculptures of Unakoti and Tripurasundari temple among others.
The airport will also feature India’s first full-body scanner. The terminal was initially scheduled to be made operational before Durga Puja last year but got delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.