Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) has announced the opening of Phase I of Terminal 2 (T2) at Kempegowda International Airport (Kia) for domestic operation in India, reported The Hindu.

The opening comes after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled Phase I of the terminal in November last year. However, flight operations were suspended due to construction work that continued until this month, reported Times of India.

BIAL operator KIA built T2 and other associated infrastructure such as access roads and utilities as part of the airport expansion.

A 4.4km additional access road was also inaugurated earlier this week to improve access to the new terminal, the newspaper added.

Dubbed the Terminal Boulevard, the road links to T2 departures and arrivals.

Star Air was the first airline to take off from KIA’s new terminal at 8:40am local time.

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Other domestic airlines and international airlines are expected to commence their services to and from T2 in a phased manner over the next few months, BIAL added.

The Hindu quoted BIAL MD and CEO Hari Marar as saying: “We welcomed customers of Star Air at KIA’s new terminal T2, today. The terminal will soon welcome passengers from other airlines as well.

“This will be done in a phased manner when the facilities and processes for the smooth transition of airlines from T1 to T2 are completed.

“The opening of T2 has been much awaited not just for us at the airport, but also for Bengalureans and passengers travelling from different cities. We want to make passenger journeys truly memorable by offering the best experience to them.”

Covering 255,645m², T2 is designed to handle at least 25 million passengers annually.

First phase of the terminal was built at the cost of Rs.50bn ($611.5m).

Work on the second phase of T2 is expected to commence in mid of this year. The second phase of the new terminal is slated to be unveiled in early 2024.

The two phases will enable the terminal to handle 45 million passengers annually.

In a separate development, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) has commissioned a new Instrument Landing System (ILS) for Runway-31 at its Birsa Munda Airport at Ranchi in Jharkhand.

The introduction of Facility Performance Category-I ILS is part of AAI’s effort to improve Air Navigation Services (ANS) infrastructure at its airports in the country.

Manufactured by M/s Indra (Normarc), the new ILS comes with an improved localiser antenna system that will improve aircraft landing at the airport in all weather conditions.