Approximately 29 airports and terminals in the country have been named after notable individuals and dignitaries, including the Shaheed Bhagat Singh international airport in Chandigarh.
A list of 24 airports and 5 terminals named after eminent personalities and dignitaries received by PTI through an RTI request shows that 24 airports and 5 terminals were named after eminent personalities and dignitaries.
There are no details on the newly renamed Chandigarh airport included in the list. The airport in Chandigarh was renamed Shaheed Bhagat Singh International Airport on September 28.
Upon the 115th birth anniversary of freedom fighter Bhagat Singh, the street was renamed.
Four airports have been named after three former prime ministers, according to the list. There are four international airports in India: Indira Gandhi International Airport in the national capital, Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad in the state of Telangana, Lal Bahadur Shastri Airport in Varanasi, and Chaudhary Charan Singh Airport in Lucknow in the state of Uttar Pradesh.
The Biju Patnaik Airport in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, is also named after a former chief minister.
Additionally, Kangra airport, Gaggal, and Kullu-Manali airport, Bhuntar, both in Himachal Pradesh, are included on the list. Although the names of these two airports were not clear, it is thought that they were named after eminent personalities/ dignitaries.
Additionally, there are five airport terminals named after eminent personalities and dignitaries. According to the list, there are two N T Rama Rao terminals at airports in Hyderabad, Telangana, including the Anna international terminal and Kamraj domestic terminal in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.
At present, there are 131 airports operating in the country, including 29 international airports and 92 domestic airports. As well as customs airports, there are 10 others. The official data also indicates that there are eight heliports and two waterdromes.
The Union Cabinet must approve the final naming and renaming of airports after an elaborate process.
The name of an airport is generally determined by the city in which it is located. Some state governments propose a specific name supported by a resolution passed by the state legislative assembly. Once the proposal has been approved by the Union Cabinet, it is forwarded to the President.
It is estimated that by 2030 there will be a total of 220 airports in the country due to the good growth potential of the civil aviation sector.