Deflating Modiji’s 35 airport claim

On Monday, Sikkim’s first airport, Pakyong Airport, was inaugurated by our Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In his speech, he mentioned that 100 airports are operational in India and out of them, 35 were made in the last 4 years. Let’s do a fact check and establish/ridicule his claims. 

There are now 100 airports in India, out of which 35 were built in the last four years

Prime Minister Narendra Modi

No more than seven airports were made operational over the last four years. 

As many as 129 airports are owned by Airport Authority of India (AAI) — of which 23 are international, 78 domestic, eight customs and 20 civil enclaves at defence airfields, according to the annual report 2017-18 of the Ministry of Civil Aviation. 

Of 129 airports, 101 airports — including civil enclaves — are operational and 28 are non-operational, according to replies by the government to the Lok Sabha on 19 July, 2018 and 8 August, 2018. 

As many as 125 airports were owned by AAI at the end of 31 March, 2014, the aviation ministry’s annual report 2013-14 shows. Of these, 94 were operational – including 29 civil enclaves – and 31, non-operational. This indicates that seven airports were made operational over the four years ending 2018. 

Pakyong Airport 

Pakyong Airport is Sikkim’s first airport. The approval for the airport was given in October 2008 by UPA government. 83% work was completed till 2014. The work was delayed because of several reasons like adverse weather conditions, frequent bandhs, agitation by Gorkha Mukti Morcha, etc. 

Our Opinion

So, in Modi’s tenure, only 17%  of the work was done and he took all the credit. This is similar to the claim of 100% rural electrification. Now coming to their 1 year 1 airport claim. Just after the Independence, were building airports a necessity? If yes, how many would have benefited with that? We should not forget the condition of India in 1947 with empty treasury and Pakistan being the trouble maker. Only in the last 2-3 decades, we were able to recover from the state of building necessities to building luxuries.  

It is clear that the government is running on advertisements, fake claims, allegations and polarization policies. This is not a government but just a political party which wants to win elections. 

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