New International Terminals
On 11th May 2022, Punjab Minister for NRI Affairs, Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal, met Union Minister of State for External Affairs, V Muraleedharan, and put forth his demand for starting direct international flights from Chandigarh (Mohali airport) and Amritsar to Canada, US, Australia and England for the convenience of the large Punjabi NRI community and to propel industrialisation across the state, and this is now on the cards.
At present, only two international flights are operational from Mohali International Airport (Chandigarh) to Dubai and Sharjah.
The Punjab government is also in talks with major airline companies including Tata’s (Air India), Vistara, British Airways and Air Canada, to start international flights from these 2 airports to London, Vancouver, Toronto, San Francisco, Chicago and New York.
‘’We are in talks with Tatas (Air India), Vistara, British Airways and Air Canada that we need direct flights from Amritsar and Mohali to London, Vancouver, Toronto, Silicon Valley, Chicago. We have an upgraded immigration and customs system. We would have three terminals (going up from one at present).” – Bhagwant Mann, Punjab Chief Minister (Link)
On 23rd May 2022, the Punjab CM, in a meeting with the State Civil Aviation department, directed it to immediately tie up with the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Airport Authority of India (AAI) to start the international flights at the earliest.
The airports have only 1 terminal at present. 2 new international terminals are planned for each airport.
These international terminals will have all the requisite facilities including five- or seven-star hotels, and the presence of staff of different embassies.
Cargo flights from Mohali International Airport are also planned with the objective of making Punjab an open market. This is expected to give a fillip to the agro and food processing industry in the state.
Punjab CM has also instructed the State Civil Aviation Department to intensify its efforts for the upgradation from CAT-2 to the advanced CAT-3 system for facilitating flying operations in low-visibility conditions especially during dense winter fog.
(Updated till 22nd Sep 2022)