Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Government announces expanded air connectivity to north-eastern States

In a major fillip to aerial connectivity in the north-eastern States, Jyotiraditya M. Scindia, Union Minister of Civil Aviation (MoCA), flagged off six new routes on October 18. The new routes and the resultant expanded aerial connectivity in the north-eastern States will enable States hitherto not connected via flights to get on to the aerial map of the country. The flight connectivity on these routes has been a long-pending demand of the peoples of the region.

The new routes, operations for which commence with immediate effect, are: Kolkata–Guwahati, Guwahati–Aizawl, Aizawl–Shillong, Shillong–Aizawl, Aizawl–Guwahati, and Guwahati–Kolkata. These flights will open a seamless gateway and smooth aerial access option for nature lovers, travellers and tourists. With the opening of these new routes, travellers from Guwahati, Aizawl and Shillong will get multiple options for onward connectivity to the rest of the country.

Alliance Air, the wholly owned subsidiary of Air India, already deploys most of its ATR aircraft for operations on routes in the north-eastern States.

Inaugurating the new routes, Jyotiraditya M. Scindia said the government was “further establishing seamless connectivity across the entire North-East India by connecting 4 cities with one flight”. Added the Minister: “Under the Udan scheme, we have connected cities that had no mention on the aviation map of the country. We have already started 60 airports, and 387 routes, out of which 100 routes are awarded to the North East alone, and 50 of these are already operational. Moreover, in 2014, only 6 airports were operational in North East, now we have expanded that to 15 airports. This highlights the importance of the north-eastern States for this government. In addition to this, under the Krishi Udan Yojna, we have identified 16 airports to enhance the export opportunities of the region, establishing dual benefits of enhancement of cargo movements and exports.”

18/10/21 Ravi Sharma/Frontline

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