Archive for the 'Airports and air connectivity' Category

Union Civil Aviation Minister to seek cabinet approval for making Bhubaneswar an international airport

Bhubaneswar, Bringing International Connectivity, Jharsuguda 3 Comments »

Following is from the PIB report at

Odisha Chief Minister calls on Civil Aviation Minister

Civil Aviation Ministry to process the proposal for upgradation of Bhubaneswar Airport to International Airport

New Domestic Terminal Building to be ready by August

The Union Civil Aviation Minister Ch. Ajit Singh has said that the proposal of Odisha Government for the upgradation of Biju Patnayak Domestic Airport Bhubaneswar to International Airport will be processed by his Ministry for seeking the Cabinet approval.Ch. Ajit Singh said this today in a meeting with Odisha Chief Minister, Shri Navin Patnayak in New Delhi.

Ch. Ajit Singh has agreed to consider the proposal of upgradation of Bhubaneswar Airport and seek the Cabinet approval for the same in keeping with the State’s Tourism potential including famous Buddhist sites and monuments. Odisha is also rich in biodiversity, natural resources and mines which strengthens the claim of Bhubaneswar Airport to be upgraded as International Airport.

The new Domestic Terminal Building at Biju Patnayak Airport Bhubaneswar which is likely to be completed by August 2012, will cater to 800 passengers against the capacity of 500 of the present terminal building. The new terminal building will be completed at the cost of Rs 145.54 Crores and will include extension of Apron for additional one ‘D’ type and two ‘C’ type bay.

The Civil Aviation Minister, among other things, also discussed the issues relating to construction of main approach road from Sachivalaya Main Road to Airport, land acquisition of 22 acres for extension of basic strip upto 300 mtrs., land acquisition of 141 acres for extension of runway from 9000 ft to 10,500 ft., and the proposal for development and operationalisation of Jharsuguda Airport in phased manner, initially for ATR 72-500 type of aircraft operations and subsequently for AB0321.

The above PIB report is probably based on the Civil Aviation ministry’s release. The Odisha government’s release is in the news report Following is from that report.

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today met the  Union Minister for Civil Aviation, Ajit Singh, in New Delhi. Hon’ble Chief Minister, Odisha informed the  Union Minister for Civil Aviation that Odisha does not have adequate air connectivity which acts as a major impediment to the industrialisation process and the growth of tourist traffic in the State.

He mentioned that the State does not have even a single International Airport and is managing with only one operational Domestic Airport at Bhubaneswar. The Chief Minister highlighted that the State has witnessed a significant spurt in investment in various industrial sectors and offers incredible tourist destinations including the World Heritage Monument, the Sun Temple Konark, the world famous Shri Jagannath Temple at Puri, many beautiful beaches and the largest Brackish water Lake, Chilka. He, accordingly, stressed upon the urgent need to scale up infrastructural support to the Aviation Sector in the State, both from the equity standpoint and the development perspective.

The Chief Minister requested the Union Minister to declare Biju Patnaik Airport as an International Airport at the earliest and provide the required facilities including an International Terminal with 24X7 ATC operations, customs and immigration facilities and security, etc. He asserted that the Ministry of Civil Aviation may accord early clearance to those Airlines which are interested to operate International flights to and from Bhubaneswar.

He also requested the Union Minister for providing necessary infrastructural support to the Jharsuguda Airport for enabling Domestic Airlines to operate from there. Chief Minister stated that the Airport Authority of India may also have a closer look at the other existing Airports in Odisha and provide the required infrastructural support to make the feasible Airports operational for Domestic Airlines. This, he stated, would improve the air connectivity within the State.

The Chief Minister assured that the State will provide all necessary support to the Ministry of Civil Aviation/ Airport Authority of India in their task of upgrading Bhubaneswar Airport to an International Airport and in making other Domestic Airports in the State operational.  Union Minister appreciated the concerns of Odisha and assured that his Ministry will immediately prepare a Note for seeking the approval of the Cabinet for upgrading Biju Patnaik Airport to an International Airport.

For Jharsuguda Airport, the Union Minister stated that the length of the Airstrip will be increased to the desired minimum to make it operational for domestic airlines, at the earliest. He also assured the Hon’ble Chief Minister that his Ministry will actively explore the possibility of connecting Bhubaneswar to the Middle East and South East Asian countries. The Union Minister added that the Union Civil Aviation Ministry and Union Tourism Ministry will work closely with the State Government to host an Aviation/ Tourism Conference in Bhubaneswar for promoting tourist traffic to the State and assured that every possible support will be made to project Odisha as a world class tourist destination.

Note that in December during the Invest Bhubaneswar symposium flydubai had categorically said that if they get a slot from India to fly to/from Bhubaneswar then they will fly Bhubaneswar – Dubai.

Indigo brings new connectivity between Bhubaneswar and Coimbatore/Vizag

BBSR-Bangalore, BBSR-Chennai, BBSR-Delhi, BBSR-Hyderabad, BBSR-Kolkata, BBSR-Mumbai, BBSR-Vizag, Bhubaneswar, Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Khordha 4 Comments »

As S. Pani points out Indigo is going to have the following new flights through Bhubaneswar:

Starting 16th Feb:
6E 293 Kolkata-Bhubaneswar-Mumbai-Coimbatore
6E 294 Coimbatore-Mumbai-Bhubaneswar-Kolkata

Starting 7th March
6E 511 Chennai-Vizag-Bhubaneswar-Kolkata
6E 512 Kolkata-Bhubaneswar-Vizag-Chennai

With these and other recent changes following is a glimpse of the flight connectivity between Bhubaneswar and other cities. We only show direct flights or flights with one stop (but no plane changes).


Delhi: (Note – The Jetlite flight does not show up in the left.)Mumbai: (The Jetlite and Jet Konect flights below refer to the same flight.)

Bangalore: (The Jetlite and Jet Konect flights below refer to the same flight.)
Hyderabad: (For some reason the above Jet Konnect/Jet Lite flight to  Hyderabad does not show up below.)Chennai: (The Air India flight below is five days a week.)Visakhapatnam:      Port Blair: Coimbatore:

The new flights that Indigo introduced has the hopping schedule that South West airlines in USA has. Such a hopping schedule allows for additional 1 or 2 stop connections without plane changes. I hope in the future similar connectivity is added to places like Cochin, Pune, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Indore, Guwahati, Lucknow/Kanpur etc.

I also noticed that on some days the price to fly between Bhubaneswar and Mumbai is more than flying from Bhubaneswar to Coimbatore via Mumbai on the same flight.

Some dimensional information about the Bhubneswar airport

Bhubaneswar, Bringing International Connectivity 3 Comments »

Following is some data from


Land Area
816.79 Acres
146 above MSL

Terminal Capacity






Boarding Gates

Ground Floor

Terminal Area and No. of Counters

Area in Sq. Meters
No. of Counters
Check In


The new airport terminal that is being constructed will be much bigger.


Nevertheless, it is clear that the new terminal is about 4-6 times bigger than the current terminal.

The article at mentions that the new terminal is expected to be ready by June 2012 and then the current terminal is planned to be used as an international terminal.

Odisha agrees to 40 more acres for the Jharsuguda airport; this airport is very important for the developement of that part of Odisha; the progress is too slow

Bargarh, Jharsuguda, Jharsugurha, Rourkela- Kansbahal, Sambalpur, Sambalpur-Burla-Jharsuguda, Sundergarh 11 Comments »

Following is an excerpt from a report in Pioneer.

Though the AAI had asked the State Government to make available a total of 815 acres of land for the airport project, the latter had requested the AAI to scale down the land requirement since maximum 734 acres are available in the area.

Now, the State Government has assured the AAI to provide additional land of around 40 acres for upgradation of the airstrip. Patnaik said the 40 acres of land would help construct a 6,000-feet-long runway. The district Collector has been told to identify suitable land and clear the encroachment, if any, before handing over the land to the AAI.

Although the above is a good step, considering the important of this airport towards well-rounded development of Odisha the government is too slow. It needs to move faster.


New radar inaugurated at Jharsuguda airport; Airport expected to be functional in two years (in 2013)

Jharsuguda, Jharsugurha, Sambalpur-Burla-Jharsuguda 8 Comments »

Thanks to Saket Sahu @ Orissatoday google group for the pointer.

Air India introduces Delhi-Portblair flight with stopover in Bhubaneswar;

Air India/Indian, Bhubaneswar, Bringing International Connectivity, Uncategorized 12 Comments »

Update on 10th October 2011: The Delhi – Bhubaneswar – Port Blair Air India (6 days a week) flight will allow boarding and deplaning of passengers at Bhubaneswar. This will not only provide Bhubaneswar – Port Blair connectivity; it will also incraese connectivity between Bhubaneswar and Delhi. Air India also plans to have another daily Bhubaneswar – Delhi flight taking the total number of daily AI flights between these cities to (almost) three   and taking the total number of daily Bhubaneswar – Delhi flights to almost eight – 7 dailies and one 6 days a week. Following is a screen copy from on the dates Nov 2 2011 and Nov 3 2011.

Following is an excerpt from a report in Deccan Herald.

Keeping in mind the high tourist potential, Air India subsidiary Alliance Air has introduced a direct flight to Port Blair from here via Bhubaneswar and would operate a new 70-seater jet plane.

Giving holiday makers another reason to cheer, Air India’s direct flight AI 9603/9604 would be operated with Bombardier’s CRJ-700 on all days of the week, except Saturday, a spokesperson said.

The above news item is confirmed from the Air India web site. See the screen capture below.

As the following map shows Bhubaneswar is very close to the straight line between Delhi and Port Blair. The stop-over in Bhubaneswar allows Air India to use a smaller aircraft that can be refueled in Bhubaneswar. I hope Air India will allow people to get on and off at Bhubaneswar.

As the map above shows Bhubaneswar is also very close to the straight line connecting Delhi to Jakarta, Delhi to Singapore and Delhi to Kwalalumpur. I hope  some of the airlines take note of that and introduce flights between those places with a stopover in Bhubaneswar.

Update: Mumbai to Hongkong and Mumbai to Taipei also passes very close to Bhubaneswar. Updated the map above to illustrate that.

Team Odisha steps in the last months on airports and air services

Angul, Bhadrakh, Bhubaneswar, Bringing International Connectivity, Dhenkanal, Ganjam, Jagatsinghpur, Jharsuguda, Jharsugurha, Keonjhar, Khordha, Others, Rangeilunda Berhampur, Rayagada, Rourkela, Sundergarh, Team Odisha 8 Comments »

Following is from the Team Orissa newsletter of AprilJune’2011.

In regards to the airport in Paradeep, there has been news that it will be an important aspect of the proposed PCPIR in Paradeep.

In the past, two other airport locations have been mentioned: Koraput/Jeypore/Sunabeda area and Balasore/Baripada/Rasgovindpur area. In fact, after Rourkela, Jharsuguda and Gopalpur, these two will be the important locations as they have the potential to be regional airports.

DTDS to start scheduled air-taxi service between Kolkata and Rourkela from September 1, 2011

Rourkela, Rourkela- Kansbahal, Sundergarh 9 Comments »

(Thanks to Situn and for the pointer.)

Following is an excerpt from a report in Telegraph.

Air taxi services between Rourkela and Calcutta will be launched from September 1. As a promotional fare, a one way trip per person (inclusive of all charges) would cost Rs 4,189 for Rourkela-Calcutta sector from September 1 till 11. Thereafter, the full fare of Rs 6,494 (inclusive of all charges) will be levied on the sector. The bookings on the Calcutta-Rourkela-Calcutta route is already on and available on the website

We explored the DTDS webiste at  Following are some excerpts.


Between Kolkata airport and all the neighboring Steel City Bokaro, Jamshedpur, Burnpur, Durgapur (Panagarh), Rourkela airport at a fixed and convenient schedule.  …

As soon as you arrive at airport, our staff will greet you with your boarding ticket and escort you till the aircraft where you board and take off.

Following are the flight timings.

Flight Code Place of Departure/Dep.Time Place of Arrival/Arrival Time Duration Baggage Limit Total Trip Cost
FL004 Rourkela
15:30 hrs
Kolkata (SAIL)
17: 0 hrs
2Hr 30 min 10kg. Rs.4,189.00**
FL003 Kolkata
10:30 hrs
Rourkela (SAIL)
13: 0 hrs
2Hr 30 min 10kg. Rs.4,189.00**


Now the people of Rourkela need to patronize this flight so that other careers get interested in scheduling regular flights to Rourkela.

Recent steps on improving air-connectivity and airport infrastructure in Odisha

Bhubaneswar, Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Jharsuguda, Khordha, Rourkela, Rourkela- Kansbahal, Sambalpur-Burla-Jharsuguda 10 Comments »

In the last couple of days there have been several news items regarding improving the air connectivity and airport infrastructure in Odisha. These include:

  • Steps towards improving the current airport in Bhubaneswar.
  • Steps towards expediting the Jharsuguda airport.
  • Steps towards having air services to two additional airports in the state.

Following are some of the news items and excerpts.

Early steps for a new airport in Bhubaneswar

Bhubaneswar, Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Khordha 5 Comments »

Following are excerpts from a report in Times of India.

The city has moved a step closer to its dream of an international airport with the state government identifying over 2,000 acres of land, around 40 km south of the capital, on National Highway 5 for it. "We have identified over 2,000 acre near Jankia and Malipada villages. The survey work is on," Khurda collector Hrusikesh Tripathy said.

Sources said land of around 20 villages, including Gayabandha, Malipada, Dalaka, Pota and Godipada, a large tract of cashew plantation belonging to the Orissa State Cashew Development Corporation, are being considered for the proposed international airport.

Official sources said the area was considered for three main reasons. One, the government has a big patch of land available in the area. So the proposed airport would require minimum land acquisition and displacement. Secondly, the NH will provide good connectivity to the airport from the city. Thirdly, it will be a strategically located for Cuttack-Bhubaneswar urban complex as well as Puri and Berhampur.

…"The airport plan is futuristic keeping in mind the city’s need for 2030 and beyond. The location has to keep in mind the city’s needs then.

… Officials said the airport plan is still at a nascent stage. A committee under the revenue divisional commissioner (central range) has tentatively identified the land. After it finalises actual details of the land, the government would send the same for a feasibility study to the Airports Authority of India. If AAI gives it a go-ahead, the government would go for land acquisition. After that the government and AAI would involve private parties to develop the airport, they said. "The current airport almost divides the city into two. It is high time to consider shifting it to a new location," said BDA planning member Prashant Patnaik.

Global Avianautics Limited (GAL) to fly 6-seater between Bhubaneswar and Rangeilunda (Berhampur/Gopalpur)

Berhampur- Gopalpur- Chhatrapur, Ganjam, Rangeilunda Berhampur 1 Comment »

Following is an excerpt from a report in

A New Delhi based private aviation service company, Global Avianautics Limited (GAL) introduced non-scheduled air transport operation from Rangeilunda airstrip here to Bhubaneswar pressing into service a six seater (two pilots and four passengers) twin engine aircraft. Ganjam district collector V K Pandian launched the service. Director and Chief Executive Officer of the company O P Suri was present on the occasion.GAL is now operating the Government Aviation Training Institute (GAIT), Bhubaneswar. … The operation from Rangeilunda to Bhubneswar would be held on the basis of availability of passengers. Since GAL has acquired licence from Director General Civil Aviation (DGCA) for non-scheduled air transport operation, the company can operate to any place in the state within a radius of 600 km where airstrip facilities are available, Chief Manager of the GAIT, P. Chakravarti said.  … The non-scheduled air transport service from Rangeilunda would pave way for a full-fledge airport in future, said local MLA (Gopalpur) Pradeep Kumar Panigrahi.Meanwhile, Road and Building, Division-II, Berhampur has prepared an estimated Rs 27.29-crore plan for development of Rangeilunda airstrip.

Jet Airways adds more flights to/from Bhubaneswar; new direct flights to Bangalore, Hyderabad, Delhi and Raipur (update: and to Mumbai)

BBSR-Bangalore, BBSR-Chennai, BBSR-Delhi, BBSR-Hyderabad, BBSR-Kolkata, BBSR-Mumbai, BBSR-Raipur, Jetlite 2 Comments »

Update on 3/19/2011: Jet adds a daily direct flight to Mumbai between 3/27/11 and 10/29/11.

Few years before, before Jet bought Sahara, the latter used to fly Bhubaneswar-Delhi, Bhubaneswar-Bangalore, Bhubaneswar-Chennai and Bhubaneswar-Kolkata routes. After Jet bought Sahara, Sahara was rechristened as Jetlite and Jetlite flew those routes but it then cancelled the first three and last year Jet Airways flights at Bhubaneswar only included two daily Jet Konnect flights between Bhubaneswar and Kolkata. 

So it is good news that in March 2011, Jet will start new Jet Konnect services in the routes of Bhubaneswar-Bangalore, Bhubaneswar-Hyderabad, Bhubaneswar-Delhi and Bhubaneswar-Raipur. The outgoing flight timings of these flights are:

Bhubaneswar Bengaluru   2312 Jet Airways^ 123457 1500 1700 1-Mar-11 27-Mar-11
Bhubaneswar Bengaluru   2312 Jet Airways^ Daily 1500 1700 28-Mar-11 24-Mar-12
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2861 Jet Airways^ Daily 2015 2120 27-Mar-11 29-Oct-11
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2851 Jet Airways^ Daily 1240 1405 30-Oct-11 24-Mar-12
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2861 Jet Airways^ Daily 2015 2120 30-Oct-11 24-Mar-12
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2851 Jet Airways^ Daily 1240 1405 27-Mar-11 29-Oct-11
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2851 Jet Airways^ Daily 0905 1030 16-Feb-11 28-Feb-11
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2851 Jet Airways^ Daily 0905 1030 11-Feb-11 13-Feb-11
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2861 Jet Airways^ Daily 2015 2120 11-Feb-11 13-Feb-11
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2851 Jet Airways^ Daily 1025 1150 14-Feb-11 14-Feb-11
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2851 Jet Airways^ Daily 0905 1030 15-Feb-11 15-Feb-11
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2861 Jet Airways^ Daily 2030 2135 14-Feb-11 14-Feb-11
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2861 Jet Airways^ Daily 2015 2120 15-Feb-11 26-Mar-11
Bhubaneswar Kolkata   2851 Jet Airways^ Daily 1240 1405 1-Mar-11 26-Mar-11
Bhubaneswar Delhi   2296 Jet Airways^ Daily 0905 1105 27-Mar-11 24-Mar-12
Bhubaneswar Hyderabad   2376 Jet Airways^ Daily 0905 1035 27-Mar-11 24-Mar-12
Bhubaneswar Raipur   2311 Jet Airways^ 123457 1200 1300 1-Mar-11 27-Mar-11
Bhubaneswar Raipur   2311 Jet Airways^ Daily 1200 1300 28-Mar-11 24-Mar-12


With these additions come April the daily flight connectivity for Bhubaneswar increases to:

  • Bhubaneswar-Delhi: 6 flights (Air India, Indigo -2, Jet Konnect, Kingfisher Red -2)
  • Bhubaneswar-Mumbai: 3 flights (Air India, Indigo – with one stop at Hyderabad, Kingfisher Red); Jet Konnect has two good connecting flights with short connection times. (Update: 4 flights till 10/29/11; Jet introduces a Jet Konnect flight.)
  • Bhubaneswar-Kolkata: 4 flights (Jet Konnect -2, Kingfisher Red-2)
  • Bhubaneswar-Hyderabad: 3 flights (Jet Konnect, Indigo-2)
  • Bhubaneswar-Bangalore: 3 flights (Indigo – with one stop at Hyderabad, Jet Konnect, Kingfisher Red)
  • Bhubaneswar-Chennai: 1 flight (Air India), Jet Konnect has a good connecting flight with short connection times
  • Bhubaneswar-Raipur: 1 flight (Jet Konnect)

The above data in a matrix form is as follows:

  Air India Indigo Jet Konnect Kingfisher Red Total
Bangalore   1 (via Hyderabad) 1 1 2+1
Chennai 1       1
Delhi 1 2 1 2 6
Hyderabad   2 1   3
Kolkata     2 2 4
Mumbai 1 1 (via Hyderabad) 1 1 3+1
Raipur     1   1
Total 3 4+2 6+1 6 20+2

Powerfly air charter to operate from 8 cities in India including Bhubaneswar

Air Deccan, Airports and air connectivity, Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Powerfly (Charter) 1 Comment »

Following is an excerpt from a report in expresstravelworld.

Deccan Charters and TajAir have recently joined hands to form a marketing alliance called Powerfly. The alliance includes Capt GR Gopinath’s Deccan Charters, IHCL owned charter services TajAir and Business Jets India (BJETS) and is poised to connect as many as 500 airports in India with the extensive charter services. Capt Gopinath, CMD of Deccan Charters, said, "The aim of setting up Powerfly is to tap the top of the travelling pyramid, providing seamless experience to international travellers. With Powerfly, we will be able to provide hassle free travel to any location in the country with complete end-to-end solutions." Powerfly services will be active from February 14, 2011 operating from eight cities – Mumbai, New Delhi, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Bhubaneswar, Hyderabad and Jammu.

The Powerfly alliance fleet will have 16 Deccan Charter crafts, and four crafts each of TajAir and BJETS, bringing three Hawker 850XPs and the Cessna Citation CJ-2, along with the P180 Avanti and the Falcons. Deccan Charters will take over the maintenance and operations of the BJETS crafts. Deccan Charters will also be the exclusive marketing concessionaire for BJETS aircraft in India and will work on developing, expanding and consolidating the market across the country through Powerfly. The combined fleet will be available through various programmes including ad hoc charters and memberships, loyalty programmes that extend across all three brands and the various hotels of Taj, and membership options. "People can buy hours and utilise them according to their needs. We aim at tying up with major charter operators in Middle East, Europe and Singapore. We are also looking at fractional ownership in these international destinations and are currently in talks with the government to allow the same," added Capt Gopinath.

The web pages of the three participating companies mentioned above are:

Among these Deccan Charters shows a map of its major operations.

What the above map and the list of eight locations in the Powerfly list suggests is that Bhubaneswar is one of the eight places in the country where a lot of charter flying happens. This is partly because of the development and growth happening in Odisha and partly because of the lack of airports in Odisha with regularly scheduled commercial airlines. Considering that a lot of charter flying happens by business houses, this means Bhubaneswar and Odisha are among the top 7 (Jammu is more for tourists) places in the country with ties to top business houses. While most of them are eying our mineral resources, Odisha should make efforts to cajole them to put positive long term legacies (such as Vedanta University) in Odisha.

Status of Bhubaneswar airport upgradation: Civil aviation minister’s answer to a Rajya Sabha question

BBSR-Bangalore, BBSR-Chennai, BBSR-Delhi, BBSR-Hyderabad, BBSR-Kolkata, BBSR-Mumbai, BBSR-Raipur, Bhubaneswar, Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Bringing International Connectivity, Khordha 4 Comments »

Following is from a report in Business Standard.

The on-going developmental work at the Biju Patnaik airport in Bhubaneswar, which aims to upgrade the airport as an International airport, is likely to be completed by November, 2011.

The expansion work, being implemented by the Airport Authority of India (AAI), envisages construction of new domestic terminal building complex with all modern amenities, which includes two aerobridges at a cost of Rs 145.54 crore.

On completion of these works, the final capacity of the Bhubaneswar airport would be 970 domestic passengers and 348 international passengers during peak hours as per IMG norms, says Union minister of state for civil aviation, Praful Patel.

Funds earmarked for construction of new terminal building and extension of apron was Rs 160.45 crore. Out of this, Rs 24.59 crore has been spent by September, this year, Patel said in response to a query from Rajya Sabha MP, Renubala Pradhan.

The average number of passengers handled by the Bhubaneswar airport daily varies from 2500 to 3150. The average daily passengers handled by the airport was 2637 in April, 2506 in May, 3150 in June, 2657 in July, 2848 in August and 2517 in September this year.

Patel said, the National Aviation Company of India Limited (NACIL) operates daily flights in Delhi-Bhubaneswar-Delhi and Mumbai-Raipur-Bhubanswar-Mumabi sectors and five flights per week in Chennai-Bhubaneswar-Chennai sector.

Similarly, the Jet Airways operates daily flights in Kolkata-Bhubaneswar-Kolkata sector, while Kingfisher Airlines operates Mumbai-Bhubaneswar-Mumbai and Bangalore-Bhubaneswar-Bangalore and Kolkata-Bhubaneswar-Kolkata sector (twice daily) flights.

Indigo operates Delhi-Bhubaneswar-Delhi (twice daily) and Hyderabad-Bhubaneswar-Hyderabad flights.

Rourkela-Kolkata flight from January 2011: Dharitri

Jharsuguda, Jharsugurha, Jharsugurha- Brajarajnagar- Belpahar, Rourkela, Rourkela- Kansbahal, Sundergarh 4 Comments »

Following is an excerpt from a report in Telegraph.

A private airline today submitted a proposal to the state government to start a daily air service between Rourkela and Calcutta. The company initially proposes to operate an 18-seater aircraft.

The company, which has done a preliminary survey, intends to use the airstrip of Rourkela steel plant but it has urged the government to provide another 64 acres to develop the airstrip. In the second phase, it plans to start anther flight from Rourkela to Bhubaneswar via Jharsuguda. The proposal is under consideration, said sources. Representatives of the airline met the chief secretary Bijay Patnaik and submitted their proposal today.

Additional land for NIT Rourkela and operationalizing Rourkela airport discussed by the Chief Secretary: Samaja

High Court, Marquee Institutions: existing and upcoming, Medical, nursing and pharmacy colleges, Rourkela, Rourkela- Kansbahal, Samaja (in Odia), Sundergarh, Universities: existing and upcoming 2 Comments »

As per their 2010 placement brochure, NIT Rourkela has 675 acres and following some high court order would be expanding by adding another 400 acres. The following Samaja article talks about that expansion.

It is great that this discussion came up at the Chief Secretary level. With stability at that position for next several years pursuing a comprehensive development agenda for Rourkela with him could work well. Some of the issues that should be pursued with him include:

  • Medical Colleges (ESIC, SAIL)
  • University (a comprehensive metropolitan university with all branches)
  • A national level sports or physical education institute or university (upgrade existing sports academies)
  • Airport
  • Raiway issues (world class station, Division HQ, Talcher-Bimlagarh line; more trains)
  • Declaring greater Rourkela as a municipal corporation
  • Public transport inside Rourkela
  • Enticing IT/BPO industries to take advantage of the cosmopolitan demography to set shop there; Development of IT parks.
  • Encouraging various companies in RKL to further contribute with respect to HRD (SAIL medical and Engineering College, etc.)

Please suggest more.

We discussed this earlier in greater length at See also

The positives of BPUT operations happening in Rourkela

Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Khordha, Rourkela, Rourkela- Kansbahal, Sundergarh, Talcher - Bimlagarh (under constr.) 3 Comments »

With more and more BPUT operations moving to Rourkela (thanks to for the pointer) there could be some huge positives, but not one that people normally think as BPUT’s academic programs in Rourkela will not be better than the programs at NIT Rourkela. But there would be definitely more seats; so that would be good. But the biggest positives would be with respect to connectivity.

In particular, the connectivity between Rourkela and the rest of Odisha, especially the Bhubaneswar area, would improve. Currently not enough attention is being paid to that.

For example, the Talcher-Bimlagarh line will significantly shorten the distance between Bhubaneswar and Rourkela. The distance between them will become 308 kms: BBS-Talcher (114) + Talcher-Bimlagarh(154) + Bimlagarh-Rourkela(40). Currently the shortest distance is 419 kms. Once Talcher-Bimlagarh line is completed one could travel between BBS and ROU in about 5 hours. That would mean one could take a train from one place at 6 and reach the other at 11. Currently the BBS-ROU intercity takes 7hrs 30 minutes one way and 7hs 55 minutes the other way. On the other hand the BBS-SBP takes between 4:40 to 4:50 minutes in the two intercities (BBS-BLGR and SBP-Puri).

So lets hope that the inconvenience caused by having many BPUT operations from Rourkela will lead to people demanding speeding up of the completion of the Talcher-Bimlagarh line and perhaps even the start of shuttle flights between Bhubaneswar and Rourkela.

Another positive would be that more private colleges (not now but in few years when the demand picks up again) may come up close to Rourkela and the frequent travel by college heads to Rourkela could give them ideas to develop the travel corridor in many ways.

So although the convenience argument is often used by many (including me) to support some BPUT operations in Bhubaneswar, where most of the BPUT colleges are, perhaps for the greater and longer term good some inconvenience in the short term can be accepted.

Bringing Rourkela and Bhubaneswar closer (in travel time as well as in people’s mind) would be a big plus for Odisha.

Lets work on operationalizing Talcher-Bimlagarh line in 3-5 years!

Tourism and Airport of International Standards in Bhubaneswar

Bhubaneswar, Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Bringing International Connectivity, Circuit: Bhubaneswar-Chilika-Puri, Khordha, Tourist promotion 12 Comments »

(Thanks to Purna Mohanty for the pointer.)

Following is from PIB

Development and promotion of tourism is undertaken primarily by the State Governments/Union Territory Administrations. The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, extends financial assistance to the State Governments/Union Territory Administrations for tourism related projects which are identified in consultation with them, under various tourism schemes of the Ministry. In the year 2008-09 a mega circuit project named development of tourist circuit “Bhubaneswar-Puri-Chilka” in the State of Orissa was sanctioned for an amount of Rs. 30.23 crore.

The Biju Patnaik Airport at Bhubaneswar has been taken up for development and upgradation to international standards, with a new terminal building with all modern facilities including two aerobridges and expansion of apron.



Following are some pictures of the planned new terminal for Bhubaneswar. One of them appears in the web page of Thanks to Devasis Sarangi, Rajeswar and others for the pictures.

Tourism is only one aspect of Bhubaneswar. The others include: capital city, metropolitan area of 1.9 million, educational and knowledge hub (e..g., 70+ engineering colleges) and surrounded by emerging industrial and business centers (Berahmpur, Angul, Kalinganagar, Paradeep) and existing and emerging ports (Paradeep, Dhamara, Gopalpur and many new ones in pipeline).

Bhubaneswar airport aircraft movement, passenger and freight numbers

Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Bringing International Connectivity, Khordha 1 Comment »

The following numbers are obtained (with some calculation) from (Thanks to Devasis Sarangi for the pointer.)

Bhubaneswar Airport (BBI) April 2006 – March 2007 April 2007 – March 2008 April 2008 – March 2009 April 2009- March 2010
 Aircraft movements
 7220  12270  9962  10708
 Passenger numbers
 351313  702199  671861  825853
 Freight (in Tonnes)
 1018  1258  1287  1998

The numbers in the last column are not directly in any file in the above site, but were calculated using data in multiple files. No assumptions were made.

The following pages give comparative numbers of domestic passenger traffic in Bhubaneswar airport with respect to other airports in India. Note that the decline from 2007-08 to 2008-09 was across the board. However,  the decline of 4.3% with respect to Bhubaneswar airport during that time was much less than the national decline of 11.2% for the same period.

With respect to the above data the domestic passenger traffic in Bhubaneswar is close to the domestic traffic in the international airport of Lucknow and is more than the domestic traffic in the international airports of Trivandrum, Calicut, Amritsar, Port Blair and Nagpur; It is more than the domestic traffic in the custom airports of Mangalore, Trichy, Bagdogra, Varanasi, Patna and Gaya and all other domestic airports that include Indore, Vizag, Vadodara, Jammu, Raipur, Chandigarh, etc.

Civil Aviation Ministry responds negatively to Odisha’s request to make Bhubaneswar airport an international airport and is in deadlock with respect to the Jharsuguda airport: article from Sambada

Bhubaneswar, Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Bringing International Connectivity, Jharsuguda, Sambalpur-Burla-Jharsuguda 9 Comments »

My position is that the ministry is most welcome to make Vizag an international airport; but it should not deprive Bhubaneswar the same. Since the above article pokes holes on Bhubaneswar’s claims for international designation and explicitly mentions Vizag, hence my following attemp to compare the two in terms of daily non-stop flight connectivity. I used and used the dates of 18th and 26th Novmeber. (This is an initial attempt. If I missed something please let me know.)

  Bhubaneswar Visakhapatnam
Delhi FIVE: 5 daily non-stop flights (Indigo – 2, Kinfisher Red -2*, Air India) TWO: 2 daily non-stop flights (Jet Konnect, Air India)
Mumbai Two: 2 daily non-stop (Kingfisher Red, Air India) Zero non-stop flights
Kolkata FOUR: 4 daily non-stop flights (Kingfisher Red – 2, Jet Konnect – 2) ONE: 1 daily non-stop flight (Jet Konnect)
Chennai ONE: 1 daily non-stop flight (Air India) THREE: 3 daily non-stop flights (Kingfisher Red, Air India, Jet Konnect)
Hyderabad TWO: 2 daily non-stop flights (Indigo) SIX: 6 daily non-stop flights (Jet Konnect, Spice Jet 2, Kingfisher Red 2,  Air India)
Bangalore ONE: 1 daily non-stop (Kingfisher Red) ZERO: No daily non-stop flight
Total metro connectivity 15 daily non-stop (only three are by Air India; rest are by private airlines) 12 daily non-stop (only three are by Air India; rest are by private airlines)
Others ? ?
Airlines operating now Air India, Indigo, Jet Konnect, Kingfisher Red Air India, Jet Konnect, Kingfisher Red, Spicejet

* The Kingfisher Delhi-Bhubaneswar flights are canceled for now, in November they show twice a day and in some December dates they show once a day. Its exact schedule is at There it shows the following:

Delhi (DEL) IT 3346 19:30 21:25 320 0 03 Oct 2010 24 Oct 2010 7 Kingfisher Red Service
Delhi (DEL) IT 3346 20:30 22:40 320 0 31 Oct 2010 22 Mar 2011 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 Kingfisher Red Service
Delhi (DEL) IT 3350 09:10 11:20 320 0 31 Oct 2010 22 Mar 2011 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 Kingfisher Red Service

Bhubaneswar (BBI) IT 3345 17:05 19:00 320 0 03 Oct 2010 24 Oct 2010 7 Kingfisher Red Service
Bhubaneswar (BBI) IT 3345 17:45 19:55 320 0 31 Oct 2010 22 Mar 2011 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 Kingfisher Red Service
Bhubaneswar (BBI) IT 3349 06:30 08:40 320 0 31 Oct 2010 22 Mar 2011 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 Kingfisher Red Service

That is it will have twice daily flights between Bhubaneswar and Delhi.

Some other comparative numbers:

On Jharsuguda airport there seems to be a deadlock. It is clear that the center wants 815 acres land and the state is offering only 734 acres.

Why is not the state giving the amount of land the center is asking for? Is there some genuine reason behind it? I don’t know. Perhaps someone who knows can help.

Also is the amount of land that the center is asking an absolute must? Are there other operational airports with less land? (I don’t know.) Ofcourse more land would mean a bigger airport. But is not it possible to use the land the state is giving to make the airport and then pursue the additional land for future expansion.

Update: Just did some search and found that:

Outside India there are some very busy airports that have around 700 acres of land. For example:

Paradip port trust plans an airstrip

Airports, Jagatsinghpur, Paradip - Jatadhari - Kujanga Comments Off on Paradip port trust plans an airstrip

Following is an excerpt from a report in

Paradip Port Trust is planning to have an airstrip within the port premises to facilitate movement to and from the port.

A resolution in this regard was recently passed by the board of trustees of the port. Mr Biplav Kumar chairman of PPT told Business Line that "We’ve also received in-principle consent of the Shipping Ministry.”

… The land for the proposed airstrip, as the port Chairman informed, has been identified.

Since the PCPIR in Paradip has been approved, I expect this airstrip will be established soon.

OTV report on efforts and progress with respect to Rangeilunda airport near Berhampur

Berhampur- Gopalpur- Chhatrapur, Bhubaneswar, Ganjam, Jeypore, Jharsuguda, Rangeilunda Berhampur, Rasgovindpur (Balasore-Baripada-Jaleswar), Rourkela Comments Off on OTV report on efforts and progress with respect to Rangeilunda airport near Berhampur

(Thanks to Future Berhampur for the link.)

This is an welcome news. My guess is that if proper efforts are made then the situation with respect to air connectivity in Odisha could be as follows:

  • Bhubaneswar airport would have a few international flights, better connectivity to big cities across India and small planes flying to nearby smaller airports.
  • Jharsuguda airport would have flights to several cities in India.
  • Airports in Rourkela, Berhampur, Jeypore and Rasgovindpur would have small planes (20-40 seaters) flying mainly to nearby larger airports.
  • The locations mentioned above matches with the Tier 1 and 2 areas mentioned in the orissa2020 site.
  • In the next tier will be airports at Angul, Therubali, Utkela (Kalahandi) and others. (See the list of airstrips in Odisha here.) I think because of the industries Angul and Therubali will be the leading contenders.

How to go about having commercial flights into Rourkela

Rourkela, Rourkela- Kansbahal, Sundergarh 5 Comments »

The best way to get commercial flights to Rourkela is to make a case with the various private airlines. If any one of them agrees, the rest regarding what authorizations would be needed to enable the planes to fly to the SAIL airport in Rourkela would not be hard. Couple of years back the then DM of Sundergarh was very close to convincing Air Deccan to fly to Rourkela. One needs to get in touch with the current DM and revive that process.

Until the Jharsuguda airport becomes functional commercial flights to this airport is sorely needed. Even after that, enough traffic now may result in commercial flights continuing their presence in the airport. So in a sense this is the last chance (for 10-15 years) for Rourkela people to have commercial flight connectivity.