Tirupati Airport declared an International Airport

October 8th, 2008 - 8:47 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, Oct.8 (ANI): The Government today declared the existing domestic airport at Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh as an International Airport.
There has been a persistent demand from public representatives for declaring the domestic airport at Tirupati an international airport, as it is a prominent place of pilgrimage, receiving around 60,000 pilgrims every day.
Tirupati airport belongs to Airports Authority of India (AAI). It has a runway of dimension 2286m X 45m (7500 ft X 150 ft) which is suitable for all weather operation of A320 type of aircraft.
The terminal building can handle 300 passengers at a time. The airport has been, recently, upgraded to make it suitable for operations during the night.The AAI is in the process of further upgrading the airport. There is a proposal for construction of new integrated terminal building to handle 700 passengers at a time, both international and domestic.
A plan for expansion of runway to operate Code E aircraft are also being prepared. The requirement of additional land has already been taken up with the Government of Andhra Pradesh.
Tirupati airport handled 169333 passengers in 2007-08 as against 80830 passengers in 2005-06. Thus, the air traffic has more than doubled in two years time indicating very high potential.
According to the Convention of International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), International airport is defined as “any airport designated by the Contracting State as an airport of entry and departure for international air traffic, where the formalities incident to customs, immigration, public health, animal and plant quarantine and similar procedure are carried out”.
Declaration of an airport as international airport depends upon traffic potential and demand from airlines for operation of international flights. The following facilities at domestic airports have usually been considered sufficient for declaring it as ”International airport”:
(i) Runway length should be 9000 feet to cater to medium capacity long-range aircraft (MCLR e.g. B-767) or equivalent type of aircraft, as these aircraft constitute majority of aircraft used in international operations.
(ii) Availability of Ground Lighting Facilities, Instrument Landing System, for operation of aircrafts at night.
(iii) Requirement/demand from scheduled national / international airline operators.
(iv) Availability of Customs, Immigration, Health, Animal & Plant Quarantine Services.
(v) Bilateral agreement between the State (Nations) or it may be offered as a point of call to foreign carriers for operations. (ANI)

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