Begumpet Airport (IATA: HYD, ICAO: VOHY) at Hyderabad, also known as Hyderabad Airport, used to be the only international airport in Andhra Pradesh, however, it is now defunct with the opening of the Hyderabad International Airport on the 23rd of March 2008. It is a civil enclave located in Begumpet. The airport is host to the Andhra Pradesh Aviation Academy, Rajiv Gandhi Aviation Academy (RGAA) and the Begumpet Air Force Station of the Indian Air Force as well.
Begumpet airport used to provide two check-in terminals; Rajiv Gandhi International and NTR National with a common arrival module. The airport handled both international and domestic traffic for Hyderabad and was the 6th busiest airport in India. It was the largest hub of Air Sahara with 126 flights.
With the replacement by Hyderabad International Airport in March, 2008, Begumpet, which is located in the heart of the Hyderabad metropolitan area, is now used for military aviation training and for flights carrying VIPs. The Leftist political parties have made strong representations to the civil aviation ministry to allow Begumpet airport to continue to be used for low cost civil aviation purposes for which it seems ideally suited. The Civil Aviation Ministry has put the proposal of starting an ATC training centre in the Begumpet Airport.
The airport used to have limited night landing facilities and only 40% of Andhra Pradesh's international traffic flows through the airport, due to lack of direct flights. President George W. Bush's Air Force One landed and took off from Begumpet during his visit to Hyderabad in early 2006. Begumpet airport's capacity has reportedly been exceeded in both domestic and international areas due to the rate of growth in passenger traffic, estimated at 45% p.a., last year, the highest among Indian airports. Begumpet Airport handled 20,000 passengers daily with about 300 aircraft movements of 16 international and 10 domestic airlines. Begumpet's capacity endowment was more than expected to start with or it has fine tuned its slot control regime to cope better with demand. All this raises questions about the actual use to which the IAF puts this base and why it cannot be kept open in future.
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