Sheikh ul-Alam International Airport

(Redirected from Srinagar Airport)

Sheikh ul-Alam International Airport (IATA: SXR, ICAO: VISR) also known as Srinagar International Airport and Budgam Airbase, is an international airport serving Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, India. It is owned by the Indian Air Force, and the Airports Authority of India operates a civil enclave at the airport. It was designated as an international airport in 2005. It has an integrated terminal and one asphalt runway. The airport is actually located in Budgam, which is 12 km (7.5 mi) from Srinagar.

Sheikh ul-Alam International Airport
Summary
Airport typeMilitary/Public
OwnerIndian Air Force
OperatorAirports Authority of India
ServesSrinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
LocationBudgam, Jammu and Kashmir, India
Elevation AMSL1,655 m / 5,429 ft
Coordinates33°59′13.7″N 074°46′27.3″E / 33.987139°N 74.774250°E / 33.987139; 74.774250Coordinates: 33°59′13.7″N 074°46′27.3″E / 33.987139°N 74.774250°E / 33.987139; 74.774250
WebsiteSrinagar Airport
Map
SXR is located in Jammu and Kashmir
SXR
SXR
Location of airport in Jammu and Kashmir
SXR is located in India
SXR
SXR
SXR (India)
Runways
Direction Length Surface
m ft
13/31 3,685 12,090 Asphalt
Statistics (April 2021 – March 2022)
Passengers3,158,400 (Increase 75.2%)
Aircraft movement24,441 (Increase 87%)
Cargo tonnage9,422 (Increase 43.4%)
Source: AAI[1][2][3]

HistoryEdit

Originally, the Srinagar Airport was used only by the Indian Air Force. During the Indo-Pakistani War of 1947, the airport received an airlift of Indian troops who prevented Pakistan from capturing the city of Srinagar. Although the airport was small and lacked landing aids, the airlift was still carried out successfully on 27 October.[4] In September 1965, the Srinagar Airport was subjected to an air raid amid the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, which left some aircraft damaged.[5][6]

In 1979, the Airports Authority of India established a civil enclave at the airport.[7] The terminal was modified in February 1998 to be able to handle international Hajj flights,[8] which first started operating from Srinagar in January 2002.[9] During the Kargil War in 1999, the airport was taken over completely by the Air Force, and civilian flights were prohibited from landing.[10]

In March 2005, the airport was granted international status by the Indian government. In 2006, the airport was renamed Sheikh-ul-Alam International Airport after the Kashmiri patron saint.[11] An expanded terminal, able to serve both domestic and international flights, was inaugurated on 14 February 2009 by politician Sonia Gandhi.[7] It was part of a larger expansion project that also included an increase in the number of parking stands from four to nine.[12] The total cost of the project was 1.3 billion (US$16 million), fully provided by the Indian government.[7] On the same day, Air India Express started once weekly flights to Dubai, the first regularly scheduled international flights from Srinagar.[7][9] However, due to low demand from passengers, the flights were terminated in January 2010.[13] In 2019, the authorities started planning to create a new airport terminal handling only international flights, which would leave the domestic ones in the older 2009 building.[14]

InfrastructureEdit

The Srinagar Airport has an integrated terminal, handling both domestic and international flights. It covers 19,700 m2 (212,000 sq ft) and can serve 950 passengers at a time: 500 domestic and 450 international passengers.[7] The terminal is designed to look like the Himalayas and has a sloping roof that facilitates snow removal.[15] Amenities include a food court, some small independent food outlets, a handicrafts shop, ATMs, currency exchange, chocolates shop, and WiFi.[16] There are 4 aerobridges linked with the terminal.

There is a single asphalt runway, 13/31, with dimensions 3,685 by 46 metres (12,090 ft × 151 ft).[17] It has been equipped to handle instrument landing system approaches since February 2011.[15] Several food joints like KFC and Pizza Hut are also available in the airport since 2018.[18]

In September 2021, Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia announced that the terminal will be expanded from the present 25,000 sq. m. to 63,000 sq. m., from an investment of ₹ 1,500 crore.[19]

 
Aircraft at Srinagar Airport

Night landingEdit

In December 2017, it was announced that the airport would handle night operations. Later in August 2018, a test flight was conducted by DGCA Team and it was passed.[20]

On 19 March 2021, commercial night flying operations at the airport started as Go-First flight bound for Delhi took off at 19:15 hrs IST. Before 19 March 2021, the last flight that took off from the airport was at 17:45 hrs IST.[21]

Airlines and destinationsEdit

AirlinesDestinationsRefs.
Air IndiaDelhi, Jammu, Leh[22][23]
AIX ConnectDelhi[24]
Go FirstAmritsar, Chandigarh, Delhi, Jammu, Mumbai
Seasonal: Sharjah
[25][26]
IndiGoAmritsar, Bangalore, Chandigarh, Delhi, Hyderabad (resumes 17 February 2023),[27] Mumbai, Raipur[28]
SpiceJetDelhi, Fujairah, Jammu, Jeddah, Mumbai
Seasonal: Medina
[29][30]
VistaraDelhi, Jammu, Mumbai[31]

StatisticsEdit

Annual passenger traffic at SXR airport. See Wikidata query.

Notable accidents and incidentsEdit

On 7 September 1965, amid the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, four fighter jets of the Pakistan Air Force attacked the Srinagar airport. An Indian Air Force Douglas C-47 Skytrain and an Indian Airlines Douglas DC-3 were destroyed during the air raid.[5][32] A Chicago Tribune article published the following day reported that one Indian aircraft and a "Caribou transport of the United Nations observers headquarters" were damaged.[6]

AccessEdit

The airport is located about 12 km (7.5 mi) from the city of Srinagar.[33] There is a car park with 250 spaces.[7] The government provides a paid bus service between the airport and the Tourist Reception Centre near Lal Chowk, while the Airports Authority of India operates a free bus service between the terminal and the airport entrance gate one km (0.62 mi) away.[34] The airport is also served by taxis and car rental agencies, which have their booths outside the terminal.[16]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Annexure III - Passenger Data" (PDF). www.aai.aero. Retrieved 9 July 2022.
  2. ^ "Annexure II - Aircraft Movement Data" (PDF). www.aai.aero. Retrieved 9 July 2022.
  3. ^ "Annexure IV - Freight Movement Data" (PDF). www.aai.aero. Retrieved 9 July 2022.
  4. ^ Ray, Jayanta (2011). India's Foreign Relations, 1947–2007. New Delhi: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-59742-5.
  5. ^ a b "ASN Aircraft accident Douglas C-47 (DC-3) registration unknown Srinagar Airport (SXR)". Aviation Safety Network. 6 October 2016. Retrieved 26 November 2016.
  6. ^ a b "Indian Army opens 2d front: Troops in drive for Hyderabad and Karachi". Chicago Tribune. 8 September 1965. p. 4. Retrieved 26 November 2016.
  7. ^ a b c d e f "New integrated terminal building at Srinagar International Airport to be inaugurated today". Oneindia. 14 February 2009. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  8. ^ "International status for Srinagar airport". The Tribune. Chandigarh. 27 January 2005. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  9. ^ a b "Sonia flags-off Srinagar-Dubai flight". Oneindia. 14 February 2009. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  10. ^ "World: South Asia India launches Kashmir air attack". BBC News. 26 May 1999. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  11. ^ "International flights from Srinagar Airport: Were Governments really interested?". Greater Kashmir.
  12. ^ Ahmad, Mukhtar (14 February 2009). "Sonia Gandhi inaugurates Srinagar international airport". Rediff.com. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  13. ^ Aslam, Faheem (19 May 2010). "Dubai flight grounded, permanently". Greater Kashmir. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  14. ^ "Passenger traffic up at Srinagar airport". media4growth.com. Retrieved 27 February 2019.
  15. ^ a b Bhujang, Vaibhav (May 2014). "Kashmir: Paradise on Earth" (PDF). Today's Traveller. New Delhi: Gill India Group. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  16. ^ a b "Srinagar: Passenger information". Airports Authority of India. 18 August 2016. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  17. ^ "Srinagar -- VISR". DAFIF. October 2006. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  18. ^ "Srinagar airport gets KFC, Pizza Hut". Rising Kashmir. Retrieved 17 January 2019.
  19. ^ "Amit Shah to inaugurate Srinagar-Sharjah international flight today". Hindustan Times. 23 October 2021. Retrieved 23 October 2021.
  20. ^ "Srinagar airport set to begin night flights next week". The Economic Times. 2 August 2018. Retrieved 17 January 2019.
  21. ^ "Explained: How night flights have been enabled at Srinagar airport". The Indian Express. 23 March 2021. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  22. ^ "Air India and Alliance Air schedule list". airindia.in.
  23. ^ http://brighterkashmir.com/820-pilgrims-to-leave-for-hajj-from-srinagar-airport-everyday/
  24. ^ "AirAsia flight schedule". airasia.com.
  25. ^ "Go First Introduces flights for Amritsar, Surat, and Dehradun". www.flygofirst.com. Retrieved 10 November 2021.
  26. ^ "Srinagar Sharjah New Launch - Go First". www.flygofirst.com. Retrieved 16 March 2022.
  27. ^ "IndiGo to resume Hyderabad-Srinagar flights". JetArena. Retrieved 20 January 2023.
  28. ^ "New flights". IndiGo. Retrieved 17 March 2022.
  29. ^ "SpiceJet Flight Schedule". www.spicejet.com.
  30. ^ "SpiceJet to operate 148 Hajj flights from and to Srinagar". Greater Kashmir. Retrieved 1 January 2020.
  31. ^ "Direct flights from SXR - Vistara". www.flightsfrom.com. Retrieved 21 July 2022.
  32. ^ "ASN Aircraft accident Douglas DC-3 registration unknown Srinagar Airport (SXR)". Aviation Safety Network. 27 November 2016. Retrieved 27 November 2016.
  33. ^ "Srinagar: General information". Airports Authority of India. 20 September 2016. Archived from the original on 7 January 2014. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  34. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)" (PDF). Airports Authority of India. Retrieved 24 November 2016.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Sheikh ul-Alam International Airport at Wikimedia Commons