Jamshedpur, the industrial capital of Jharkhand has ranked 84th fastest growing city in the world by the City Mayors Foundation. The steel city is moving fast towards becoming a smart city with a lot of initiative taken by the Government of Jharkhand as well as JUSCO (Jamshedpur Utilities and Service Company), a subsidiary of Tata Steel Ltd.
The rapidly growing city still needs a major development, a fully functioning airport.
Table Of Contents
- Jamshedpur Airport
- When Will Jamshedpur Get An Airport?
- Tata Steel International Airport
- Dhalbhumgarh Airport
- When will Jamshedpur Airport start?
- Frequently Asked Questions
Is There An Airport In Jamshedpur?
Yes, Jamshedpur Airport (IATA Code: IXW), located in Sonari, operated by Tata Steel Ltd is the official airport of the steel city. The airport was inaugurated in the year 1940 with the view of making air travel possible in the city.
Currently, the Jamshedpur Airport serves only the chartered planes of the TATA Group.
Why Jamshedpur Airport Does Not Serve Any Domestic Flights?
In the year 2007, the 25 acres aerodrome was served by few airlines such as Air Deccan, Kingfisher Airlines, MDLR Airlines, and Deccan Charters for a short period of time.
Later, in the year 2009, MDLR and Kingfisher resumed the services only to seize the operations a few months later. Irrespective of good response, the service was stopped, as various restrictions were imposed because of the short length of the runway. Air Deccan and Kingfisher were operating ATR flights having 42 and 72 seats respectively which was not very convenient for a 1.2 km runway.
Again in August 2010, the service was re-started by Deccan Charters with a 19-seater turboprop aircraft but the service ended in February 2011.
In February 2012, the flight service was hoped to be resumed between Jamshedpur and Kolkata with a 20 seater Dornier 228 but was later postponed.
In the year 2018, DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation), re-launch the air service in Jamshedpur under the project UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik) after being postponed thrice. Air Deccan was expected to re-commence its services between Jamshedpur and Kolkata and start a new service between Jamshedpur and New Delhi with an 18-seater Beechcraft1900 D airplane.
However, the service was started between Jamshedpur and Kolkata with an introductory fare of INR 999 including taxes. The service was again ceased due to the short runway. The minimum runway required for the UDAN scheme was 1.5 km whereas Jamshedpur airport has 1.2 km runway.
When Will Jamshedpur Get An Airport?
The Jamshedpur Airport of Jamshedpur, due to its short runway has always faced problems to serve the city. As a result, two new projects were initiated keeping in mind the absolute need to establish an airport for the city.
Tata Steel International Airport
In the year 2012, Tata Steel Ltd came up with a plan to establish an International Airport for the steel city of Jamshedpur in Dhalbumgarh. However, the Seraikela-Kharsawan district administration identified 665 acres of forest land in Gamharia which was more suitable for a brand new airport than the deserted aerodrome in Dhalbumgarh which existed since the world war II.
The state civil aviation department announced that the best choice for the airport was Gamharia, as it was only 12 km away from Jamshedpur and the twin city Adityapur than Dhalbhumgarh which was 60 km away.
Why Tata Steel International Airport Project Was Put To An End?
The government further stated that the 650 acre of the land was under the forest department and was only needed to be transferred to the state civil aviation department. However, the rest of the land, across Shibpur, Mohanpur, Machilikudur, Jagannathpur, Murgaguttu, and Salempathar villages was under the riyati or private land category. The 400 crore Tata International Airport, with a 10000 feet runway, gave new hope to the city.
The project was about to commence when it received a protest from Bhumi Rakshya Sangharsh Samity (BRSS). The Samity claimed that the establishment of the airport at their village would harm the life of the villagers. The Tata’s tried to convince all the six villages but only a few villagers agreed. Therefore, in the year 2015, Tata Steel had to close the project.
Jharkhand Civil Aviation Department and the Airports Authority of India (AAI) signed an MoU (Memorandum Of Understanding) in 2019 to establish an airport in an already existing World War II airfield in Dhalbhumgarh, 60 km away from the city of Jamshedpur.
Why Dhalbhumgarh Airport Will Not Be Constructed?
The airfield of Dhalbhumgarh was surrounded by forest and was brought under the forest department by a settlement survey conducted in the year 1964.
To build the airport, an area of 100 acres of the forest was needed which was a route for Elephants migrating from the corridor of Dalma Wildlife Sanctuary, Jharkhand to West Bengal.
The land needed for the construction of the airport also consisted of 79,332 trees, which was another matter to worry about. There was no other way to establish the airport other than deforestation. The area was already a victim of Elephant rampage and any further disturbance of the habitat would have lead to severe Elephant-Human conflicts.
As a result, the Government of Jharkhand in a step to save the wildlife and forest put off the project.
When will Jamshedpur Airport start?
There has been a lot of speculations about when will Jamshedpur airport be operational and available for public, there is no straight answer to that as you have already read in the upper sections of this post about the unfortunate circumstances every time the airport project started. However, the current Jharkhand government is very keen on bringing the second commercial airport in Jharkhand apart from the Ranchi.
Frequently Asked Questions About Jamshedpur Airport
The code of Jamshedpur Airport is
Birsa Munda Airport, Ranchi, and Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport, Kolkata are the nearest airport to Jamshedpur.
No, there are no flights from Jamshedpur to Kolkata. Currently, Jamshedpur Airport serves only the chartered flights of the TATA Group.
No, there is no official website of Jamshedpur airport.
The distance of Dhalbhumgarh airport from Jamshedpur is 58.8 km via NH18.
No, there are no flights from Delhi to Jamshedpur. Currently, Jamshedpur Airport serves only the chartered flights of the TATA Group.