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PM Modi to visit UP today to Inaugurate Kushinagar Airport

By Priyanka Verma 
Updated Date

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be inaugurating the Kushinagar International Airport today, October 20 at the Lord Buddha’s Parinirvana in Uttar Pradesh. The airport is aimed at boosting tourism on the Buddhist circuit. PM Modi along with Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, eminent monks from Sri Lanka, Thailand, Myanmar, Bhutan, Nepal, Combodia and ambassadors of various countries will participate in an event marking Abhidhamma Day at Mahaparinirvana Temple on Wednesday.

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The ancient city of Kushinagar is the final resting place of Gautama Buddha, where he attained Mahaparinirvana after his death.

The inauguration of the Kushinagar International Airport will be marked by the landing of the inaugural flight at the airport from Colombo, Sri Lanka, carrying a Sri Lankan delegation of over 100 Buddhist monks and dignitaries including the 12-member holy relic entourage bringing the holy Buddha relics for exposition.

The delegation also comprises anunayakas (deputy heads) of all four nikatas (orders) of Buddhism in Sri Lanka; Asgiriya, Amarapura, Ramanya, Malwatta as well as five ministers of the Lankan government led by cabinet minister Namal Rajapakshe.

Here’s all you need to know about Uttar Pradesh’s Kushinagar International Airport:

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1. The Kushinagar Airport is spread across 3,600 sqm. The airport has been built at an estimated cost of ₹260 crore.

2. The new terminal is equipped to handle 300 passengers during peak hours. Kushinagar is an International Buddhist Pilgrimage Centre, where LordGautam Buddha attained Mahaparinirvana. It is also the centre point of the Buddhist circuit, which consists of pilgrimage sites at Lumbini, Sarnath and Gaya.

3. This will be Uttar Pradesh’s third international airport. At present, Chaudhary Charan Singh International Airport at Lucknow and Lal Bahadur Shastri International Airport at Varanasi — are operational in the state. Whereas the fourth airport at Jewar Gautam Budh Nagar will become operational soon.

4. The airport will help in attracting more followers of Buddhism from home and abroad to Kushinagar and will enhance the development of a Buddhist theme-based circuit. The journey of Lumbini, Bodhgaya, Sarnath, Kushinagar, Shravasti, Rajgir, Sankisa and Vaishali of the Buddhist circuit will be covered in lesser time.

5. Direct aviation connectivity with South Asian countries will make it easier for tourists arriving from Sri Lanka, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, China, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore etc to reach Kushinagar and experience the rich heritage of the region.

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6. The airport will serve a population of more than two crore since the airport has a hinterland of around10-15 Districts and will be a great support for the large migrant population of Eastern Uttar Pradesh and Western / Northern Part of Bihar.

7. This will also boost the opportunities for the export of horticultural products like bananas, strawberries and mushrooms.

8. Tourism inflow is expected to rise by up to 20% with the inauguration of the flight.

9. The Union Cabinet had in June last year approved the Kushinagar airport’s status as an international facility, stating it will offer improved connectivity to the important Buddhist pilgrimage site.

10. Kushinagar Airport has a single 3.2km by 45-meter long runway with an apron that can accommodate four B737-900 types of aircraft at a time.

After the inauguration of the Kushinagar International Airport, PM Modi will participate in a public function at Barwa Jangal, Kushinagar. In the event, he will lay the foundation stone of Rajkiya Medical College, which will be built at a cost of over ₹280 crore.

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As per the PMO statement, the college will have a 500-bed hospital and will provide admissions to 100 students in the MBBS course in academic session 2022-2023. Prime Minister will also inaugurate and lay the foundation stone of 12 development projects worth over ₹180 crore on Wednesday.

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