After inaugurating the high-altitude Sikkim Pakyong Airport, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that there are 100 airports in India with 34 of them built after the BJP came to power at the Centre in 2014. This makes it an average of nine airports built every year since 2014.
On September 24, Prime Minister Modi had said during the inaugural speech, "Today, it is not only a historic day for Sikkim but also for the country. With the inauguration of the Pakyong airport in the state, the country got its 100th operational airport," reports The Quint.
"Since Independence to 2014, over 67 years, there were 65 airports. i.e an average of one airport per year whereas for the past four years, on average, nine airports have been built per year," PM Modi said.
According to latest the Civil Aviation Ministry, there are around 110 airports with 26 international, eight customs and 74 domestic airports that function under the Airports Authority of India.
This data would be ideal if only the operational international and domestic airports were counted. This would make the Pakyong airport the 101st operational airport.
However, according to the data recorded until March 31, there were nearly 28 non-operational airports in the country, reports The Quint. Hence, there is no clarity over what PM Modi was referring to while describing the 100th airport.
The Pakyong Airport is a Greenfield airport. It is constructed without making any changes to an existing structure.
At present, the flights from Pakyong Airport only operates to Kolkata and Guwahati, according to the Tribune. However, the airport will soon be connected with the rest of the country. The plan for the airport was put across in 2008 and Sikkim finally got its first airport in 2018.