Thursday, April 20, 2017

PM Narendra Modi to launch UDAN scheme from Jubbarhatti airport on April 27

Shimla: With Prime Minister Narendra Modi set to launch UDAN (Udey Desh ka Aam Nagrik) scheme from Jubbarhatti airport on April 27, Shimla will soon get air connectivity. Under the scheme, passengers will have to pay Rs 2,500 for an hour long flight.
This comes as a fresh lease of life for the airport, where no flights had landed since September 2012. High maintenance cost and lack of utility made the airport a liability, despite its location in a bustling tourist destination. People associated with the tourism industry said a functional airport could have increased tourist footfall by 12% to 14% annually.
Leaders of both the BJP and Congress had been raising the issue of air connectivity in Shimla during their visits to Delhi. Now, with the flight service about to be launched, things will finally change.
Shimla Airport was constructed in 1987 and regular flights were operated by different airlines like Vayu Doot, Jagson Airlines, Air Deccan and Kingfisher Airlines till September 2012 without any Viability Gap Funding (VGF) or other assistance from the state government.
The Airports Authority of India (AAI) widened the runway of the Shimla airport from 23 metres to 30 metres to felicitate landing of ATR-42 with a load penalty. Still, services did not start.
20/04/17 Times of India