Ranchi: Since its operationalization, Deoghar airport, till July 11 received 63764 air passengers while 64592 passengers departed to other destinations. The total number of passengers (departure+arrival) has gone well above 1,28,000 at the airport.
Constructed under the UDAN, RCS scheme, Deoghar Airport as it was conceived, plays a vital role in the economic development of not just the areas in proximity but the whole state. Earlier, the last year, Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated it on 12th July 2022. On the occasion, he had said that the airport would lead to tremendous ease for devotees of Baba Baidyanath. The airport records massive footfalls:
Since its operationalization, Deoghar airport, till 11/07/2023 received 63764 air passengers while 64592 passengers departed to other destinations. Thus, the total number of passengers has gone well above 1,28,000. Currently, Deoghar Airport has direct flights from and to Delhi. Similarly, the Kolkata-Deoghar-Ranchi- Deoghar-Kolkata and Kolkata-Deoghar-Patna- Deoghar-Kolkata routes are performing well on the expected lines.
Being a religious place helps Deoghar attract visitors from across India and to some extent world as well. Deoghar airport plays a vital role for the pilgrims seeking blessings of Baba Baidyanath Dham, an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. Located in the Santhal Parganas division of the state of Jharkhand, it is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas. For ages, the shrine has been a popular destination among pilgrims where they traverse through difficult terrain and negligible transportation facilities.
The airport in Deoghar has opened a travel option that is swift and affordable as well as comfortable, this may have been a reason behind the record footfall. Not just the pilgrims seeking blessings of Baba Baidyanath Dham but the wanderers chasing adventure also flocking into Deoghar in large numbers.
Another major advantage associated with Deoghar Airport is that it is in the city and has a wide catchment area. By default, it covers North-West Bengal and South-East Bihar. People from cities in the vicinity like Banka, Khagaria, Munger, Sheikhpura, Bhagalpur & Jamui in Bihar, etc. also benefit from the airport as it connects them with Delhi and Kolkata. Deoghar becoming an epicenter of economic activities: The government spent nearly Rs. 400 crores to construct the Terminal Building of the airport which can handle over five lakh passengers annually.
During the period of construction, it employed youth, especially locals. Now, it is contributing to the cumulative growth of travel and tourism. UDAN is not just about connectivity and affordable air traveling but also about contributing to the economic growth of the nation.
Higher footfalls in Deoghar have great implications as it is not just boosting the local economy, it’s also playing a pivotal role in the overall growth prospects of the state. Jharkhand in general and Deoghar region in specific has for long been devoid of development; however, with high-end airports connecting with Delhi & Kolkata, Deoghar becoming an epicenter of economic activities.
Apart from fulfilling the void of infrastructure and economic development, the airport also gives an impetus to ease of living in the region, bring prosperity, and help it emerge as an attractive destination.