Friday, March 15, 2019

Soon, flying to nearby cities may become more affordable! Here's why

New Delhi: Regional air connectivity in India is all set to get a major boost! The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently approved the extension of time and scope for revival and development of un-served and under-served airstrips of state governments, Airports Authority of India (AAI), Civil enclaves, CPSUs, helipads and water aerodromes.

The cost of the project is pegged at Rs 4,500 crore with the budgetary support of the central government. Because of this project, small cities/towns will be connected on commencement of operation of flights to under-served/un-served airports and it will further boost the economic development in these as well as surrounding areas in terms of job creation as well as related infrastructure development.

It may be noted that the civil aviation ministry has received an overwhelming response from the airlines in two rounds of RCS bidding held so far. In the first round of UDAN bidding, 128 routes were assigned to five airline operators for 43 un-served/underserved airports/airstrips on March 31, 2017. The responses from airline operators have considerably improved in the second round of RCS bidding wherein 86 proposals involving 325 routes were awarded to 15 selected airline operators in January 2018.