As part of the relentless efforts made by the Government of India to integrate and streamline air, rail and road connectivity of people, goods and services, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had laid the foundation stone of what would be the fourth largest international airport in the world.
Situated at Jewar in Uttar Pradesh, the upcoming airport (Noida International Airport) would cater to all international flights and ease the burden put on the Indira Gandhi International Airport in recent years.
Apart from easing the burden and providing better connectivity, the project would also lead to a further inflow of investment (both foreign and domestic) as well as create widespread employment opportunities. With more than Rs 5,000 crore allocated towards the construction of the first phase of the project, more than one lakh employment opportunities are expected to be created on an accumulated area of nearly 3,000 acre.
In what is touted to be a significant benefit to those who reside in the National Capital Region (NCR), local products and produce are expected to become much more competitive, as access to international markets would naturally become easier and faster, thereby benefiting crores of people living in Delhi, Noida, Ghaziabad, Aligarh, Agra, Faridabad, among other nearby towns and cities as well.
In addition, it is expected that time consumed in warehousing and logistics would be reduced significantly, saving considerable time with the introduction of the concept of an integrated multimodal cargo hub as well. Since the airport terminal is expected to have a footfall of more than 1.5 crore passengers every year for the foreseeable future, the cargo hub would aid in the facilitation of smooth trade and operations.
With the advent of the Noida International Airport, Uttar Pradesh would become the only state in India to have five functional airports. Paving the way towards becoming a gateway to northern India, the airport would be able to facilitate trade as well as tourism in parts of India that it aims to connect by the time the first flight takes off from the airport by September 2024.
It is expected that the completion of the project would further fast-track the construction of the Film City, the Medical Device Park and the Uttar Pradesh Defence Industrial Corridor.
Interestingly, the airport would also become the first in India to operate with net zero emissions and entirely based on digital technology.
In a new age India, the airport would give a fresh impetus to the development of a wide region.
Initiatives undertaken in the last few years have led to the realisation of the common man’s dream of air travel under the UDAN scheme (‘Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik’). With a proactive government keeping a check on the timeline of the project along with the stated budget, it is widely expected that the target to complete the project by September 2024 would be met.
Along with the basic requirements, it is quite possible that ground transportation to the airport from cities like Agra, Greater Noida, Noida, Gurgaon, Ghaziabad and Delhi would become feasible through road, rail and metro links by the time the airport becomes functional. Noida International Airport is truly proved to be a new ‘jewel in the crown’ of Uttar Pradesh.
Since the country’s independence, various Indian governments did not prioritise infrastructure as a sector. Though, it was omnipresent in budget presentations and scheme outlays as a significant head but rarely ever seen on the ground.
The Government of India under the current BJP government has attempted to build the best possible modern infrastructure. Infrastructure building was looked at with a renewed vigour.
It was with the advent of the liberalisation reforms and the fast-paced developmental changes in the country, infrastructure was given a major fillip after huge overhauls within the system. It is in line with this idea that the Government of India, as part of its ‘Nation First’ policy, laid special emphasis on the idea of building infrastructure for development.
It was one of the first instances of a government finally understanding the significance of a better road network, rail and airport connectivity in the larger scheme of things.
Therefore, it came as no surprise when the government led by Prime Minister Modi further emphasised on the need to rejuvenate these areas of development with the aim of transforming the entire region and lives of those in the region.
It was with this in mind that ease of transportation was integrated along with generating other employment opportunities in the framework of invoking massive investments within India and particularly in larger states like Uttar Pradesh.