Lucknow, July 17 : The Government today approved the naming of the Lucknow Airport as "Chaudhary Charan Singh Airport".
The Lucknow airport belongs to Airports Authority of India (AAI). It has a terminal building with a capacity to handle 500 passengers.
The existing runway at Lucknow airport is suitable for operation up to A-300 class of aircraft. Besides domestic flights, limited international operations also take place from this airport. For this reason, Lucknow airport has also been notified as a 'Customs airport'.
The normal practice with the AAI has been to retain the name of the city, which it serves, for the airport, as it is helpful to the tourists, especially foreign tourists.
However, in the past, some airports in important cities have been named, with the approval of the Union Cabinet, after the eminent personalities belonging to the area.
The Ahmedabad airport has been named as "Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport"; Patna airport is known as "Jai Prakash Narayan Airport"; Udaipur airport as "Maharana Pratap Airport"; Bhubaneshwar airport as "Biju Patnaik Airport"; Guwahati airport as "Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi Airport"; Ranchi airport as "Birsa Munda Airport"; Indore airport as "Ahilya Bai Holkar Airport"; Port Blair Airport, Bhopal airport and Gwalior Civil Air Terminal renamed as "Veer Savarkar Airport", "Raja Bhoj Airport" and "Rajmata Vijayayraje Schindia Terminal", respectively; New Greenfield airport at Shamshabad near Hyderabad as "Rajiv Gandhi International Airport";Nagpur airport has been renamed as "Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport, Nagpur"; Leh airport as "Kushok Bakula Rimpochhe Airport, Leh" and the Varanasi airport as "Lal Bahadur Shastri Airport, Varanasi".
Besides, there are the international airports such as Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi; Chattrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai; Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport, Kolkata; and Anna International Terminal and Kamraj Domestic Terminal at Chennai airport.
Requests had been received by the Ministry of Civil Aviation, in the past, from Government of Uttar Pradesh for naming of Lucknow airport as "Chaudhary Charan Singh Airport, Lucknow".
The request was examined in the light of past practice of naming airports after eminent personalities and the contribution of Chaudhary Charan Singh to the nation.
Chaudhary Charan Singh was the seventh Prime Minister of the country. He was also an eminent freedom fighter and the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. He was known for his simplicity, honesty and special commitment to the cause of farmers. His contribution to enforcing and implementation of Zamindari Abolition and Land Reforms Act is unforgettable. Keeping in view Chaudhary Charan Singh's contribution to the Nation and his special association with the State of Uttar Pradesh, the Government thought it appropriate to name the airport, in the capital of Uttar Pradesh, after him.