Sikkim: PM Modi inaugurates state's first ever airport
GANGTOK: Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated Pakyong Airport in Sikkim on his two-day visit to the state, here on Monday.
Earlier on Sunday, announcing his visit to the state, PM Modi took to Twitter and said, “after the programme in Jharkhand I will leave for Sikkim. In Sikkim, I will be inaugurating the Pakyong Airport tomorrow, which will improve connectivity and benefit the people of Sikkim.”
The prime minister was received by Governor Ganga Prasad, Chief Minister Pawan Chamling and others at Libing Army Helipad.
Until now Sikkim was India's only state with no functional airport and had waited around for nine years after the foundation stone was laid.
The first commercial flight from Pakyong would begin from October 4, told Pakyong Airport Director R Manjunatha.
This engineering marvel is spread over 201 acres and is situated on the top of a hill, above 4,500 feet above sea level, with runway stretching to 1.75 km. The airport was built by 'Airports Authority of India' at an estimated cost of Rs. 605 crores.
The Pakyong Airport will not only improve connectivity but also attract tourism in this beautiful hill station as until now the nearest airport from Sikkim was 124 km away in Bagdogra in West Bengal.