Gorkhaland stir hits Bagdogra airport’s growth

KOLKATA: Bagdogra airport’s record run has been stumped by the unrest in Gorkhaland.

The airport at the foothills of the Himalayas, that had hit a purple patch in recent months with record number of passengers flying in and out, witnessed a growth slump as the agitation peaked in June, reports The Times of India.

With the stalemate persisting, the decline this month has been more sharp.

Aviation industry sources said some airlines are even contemplating withdrawing some flights till normality is restored in the Hills.

With 90% of flyers to Bagdorgra comprising tourists, the indefinite strike in Darjeeling and difficulty in access to Sikkim have led to flights losing a quarter of passengers.

According to sources, Bagdogra airport witnessed a 20% growth decline in June compared to May as the Gorkhaland movement resurfaced and rapidly turned volatile in the second week.

While passenger figures did not register a decline in absolute terms, the pace of growth fell sharply.

While flyers increased by 73% in May 2017 against May 2016, the growth dipped to 54% in June 2017 against the corresponding month last year.


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