Kolkata Airport is officially known as Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport. Located at Dum Dum, near Kolkata, the airport lies at a distance of 18 km from the city and serves as the gateway to north-eastern parts of the country. It is one of the major airports in the country catering to international and local traffic. The airport is also among the top ten airports in the country, with 310 flight operations in a day. Kolkata Airport is the largest airport in East India and one of the two airports operating in West Bengal. Itís the key centre for all the flights to Northeast India and Bangladesh.
Kolkata Aiprort came into existence as Dum Dum Airport, to serve as the gateway to north-eastern states of India. It was in the year 1924 that the first flight landed at the airport. The plane used for the same was Dakota-3, which operated during World War II. Somewhere around fifty years later i.e. in 1975, the Cargo Terminal of the airport was commissioned. With this, Dum Dum Airport became the first airport in India to have a Cargo Terminal. In 1995, the domestic terminal of the airport was commissioned. Later, the airport was renamed as Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport, in the honor of the Bengali Indian freedom fighter - Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.
Kolkata Airport has three terminals: a domestic terminal, an international terminal and a cargo terminal. It has two parallel runways, the longer one being used for take-offs and landings and the other one as a taxiway and for daytime aircraft landing. It is connected to the Kolkata Suburban Railway system and is also accessible by taxi and bus services. Ten International airlines operate from Kolkata Airport. Domestic airlines operating from Calcutta Airport include Indian Airlines, Alliance Air, Jet Airways, Air Sahara, and Blue Dart Ltd. (Freighter).
Traffic at the Kolkata Airport has increased tremendously in the past three to four years, which has called for modernization of the airport. The Airports Authority of India is now providing a much needed face-lift to Kolkata Airport and a fourth terminal is on the way. The runways will also be lengthened under the modernization plan. The existing domestic terminal building will continue to be used with appropriate modifications and facade treatment. The cargo handling capacity of the airport has been scaled up, sufficient to cater to increasing demand up to 2015-16. Work on a secondary runway extension, rapid exit taxiways and parking bays is in progress.