Tripura’s indigenous populace rejoice as Centre confirms renaming Agartala Airport after an erstwhile king


TNT News | July 04, 2018


It is a day to rejoice for Tripura's indigenous people as their long pending demand of renaming Agartala Airport in as Maharaja Bir Bikram Manikya Kishore Airport to honour the services and memory of their late king finally sees the light of the day.  The Centre has decided to rename the Agartala Airport as Maharaja Bir Bikram Manikya Kishore Airport.

The same was confirmed by Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb today:

The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Wednesday approved renaming the airport. Renaming it after the state's erstwhile king was one of the poll promises of the BJP government that went on to acquire power in the state by ousting the Left Front earlier this year. The state's royal family welcomed the Centre's decision including Deputy Chief Minister Jishnu Dev Varma.

Incidentally, this development has come on a day which also happens to be the birthday of  Maharaj Bir Bikram's grandson and Congress leader, Pradyot Kishore Manikya Debbarma. The royal scion tweeted:

Echoing similar views, the Deputy Chief Minister of Tripura also tweeted saying, "I express my deep gratitude to the Hon'Ble Prime Minister Sri @narendramodi ji for taking this magnanimous step in naming the Agartala Airport as Maharaja Bir Bikram Manikya Airport. This is indeed a historical moment for us,".

However, the Twipra Students' Federation (TSF) do seem very satisfied with this move. Speaking to TNT- The Northeast Today, TSF General Secretary Sunil Debbarma said, "We are not fully satisfied with this move of the Central government although we appreciate it. The airport has been named Bir Bikram Manikya Kishore Bahadur. His surname 'Debbarma' is not included in the name. We will raise our voice in this regard soon".

The Agartala Airport was constructed in 1942 on a plot of land donated by Maharaja Bir Bikram Manikya. A visionary ruler who traveled extensively across the globe, he took several steps for the overall development of Tripura. It was due to his initiative that an aerodrome at Agartala was constructed which in due course evolved into the second busiest airport of Northeast India.

Maharaja Bir Bikram Manikya is considered as the father of modern architecture of Tripura. The entire planning of the present-day state was initiated during his rule. The kingdom of Tripura was merged with India following the country's independence.