Nagpur stakes claim to lead boomtown pack
Once relegated to second-grade status after ceasing to be the capital of the erstwhile CP and Berar Province, Nagpur is on the upswing.
What started with a controversial 1.5-km modern flyover in the busiest Sitabuldi area of the city some ten years ago, is now fast shaping up into a hurricane of development.
At the centre of it all is a Rs 3,000-crore Multimodal International Hub Airport at Nagpur (MIHAN) that will feed a Rs 10,000-crore Special Economic Zone. IT leaders like Satyam, L&T Infocity and Shapoorji Pallonji have already bought over 250 acres in MIHAN’s proposed SEZ. Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and General Electric teams too are visiting soon.
About 1,500 of the required 3,500 hectares have already been acquired for MIHAN. An international school is coming up soon, an ultramodern airport with a capacity to handle 10,000 people has been envisaged and a 100-MW captive power plant is set to come up.
But the real booster came recently when Boeing chose it for its proposed about Rs 500-crore Maintenance, Repairs and Overhaul (MRO) facility. For a city that carried the tag of backwardness for many decades, Boeing meant a giant leap, literally.
Already, Container Corporation of India’s inland depot at Nagpur is the fastest -rowing inland port in the country.
‘‘After the Boeing announcement, I have been flooded with inquiries from all over the world. TNT, Europe’s transport giant, have approached us to explore the possibility of setting up their base,’’ says Sinha.
What goes in Nagpur’s favour is its central location—over 400 international flights pass daily over its skies, making Nagpur Air Traffic Control (ATR) the busiest in the country. Moreover, it is at the confluence of two major National Highways Kanyakumari-Varanasi (no 7) and Hawrah-Dhule (no 6) and all east-west and north-south railway lines.