Kushinagar International Airport, UP, India

New International Airport is proposed in the one of the four holy places declared by the Buddha to be fit. The land required for the airport site is cultivable land and the farmers who own the land are not willing to give their land for the project.


Kushinagar in Uttar Pradesh is an important Buddhist pilgrimage site where the body of Gautama Buddha was cremated. It became one of the four holy places declared by the Buddha to be fit places for pilgrimage [1]. The place is mainly connected by the road. Although, there is already an airstrip, it is not enough to meet increasing volume of tourists from across the world. The government had hence taken a decision to develop an international airport in the city [2].

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Basic Data
NameKushinagar International Airport, UP, India
ProvinceUttar Pradesh
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Infrastructure and Built Environment
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Land acquisition conflicts
Ports and airport projects
Specific Commodities
Project Details and Actors
Project Area (in hectares)222,577
Level of Investment (in USD)122,568,750
Type of PopulationRural
Start Date2010
Company Names or State EnterprisesIL&FS Infrastructure Development Company Limited from India - as project consultant
M/s India Aviation Consulting & Support from India - they are the Aviation consultants for preparation of Technical Feasibility Report and Master Plan for the proposed Airport
M/s SENES India Pvt. Ltd from India - they are the Environmental Impact Assessment EIA experts responsible for facilitating IL&FS IDC undertaking EIA studies and EIA clearance
Relevant government actorsGovernment of Uttar Pradesh, Planning Commission, Government of India, Department of Economic Affairs, Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Civil Aviation
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersOne former member of state legislature & Local Villagers
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)LOW (some local organising)
When did the mobilization beginPREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups MobilizingFarmers
Landless peasants
Local government/political parties
Forms of MobilizationPublic campaigns
Street protest/marches
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution
Socio-economic ImpactsPotential: Displacement, Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Loss of livelihood, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Project StatusProposed (exploration phase)
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseCompensation
Institutional changes
Negotiated alternative solution
New legislation
Strengthening of participation
Do you consider this as a success?Not Sure
Why? Explain briefly.The land required for the airport site is cultivable and the farmers who own the land are not willing to part with it. It is their only source of livelihood. Farmers from two villages fear losing their land and homes to the airport site. Farmers from six more villages may lose their cultivable land. Farmers alleged that the compensation that the government is giving is not sufficient to buy land at other places. The farmers cannot be deprived of their only asset and left landless [2]
Sources and Materials

National Rehabilitation and Resettlement Policy
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[2] Farmers protest against acquisition of land for international airport in Kushinaga
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[3] Kushinagar Airport project back on runway
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[4] Kushinagar in UP to have international airport
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[5] Protests put UP projects on the backburner
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UP government plans international airport in Kushinagar
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[1] Development of International Airport at Kushinagar, Uttar Pradesh on A PPP Format Project Information Memorandum
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Media Links

Air strip near Kushinagar
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Other Documents

http://www.thaindian.com/newsportal/business/kushinagar-in-up-to-have-international-airport_100631550.html Kushinagar is an important Buddhist pilgrimage site where the body of Gautama Buddha was cremated
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Kushinagar is the place where Lord Gautam Buddha breathed his last.
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Meta Information
ContributorSwapan Kumar Patra
Last update24/08/2018