Friday, December 10, 2021

Union civil aviation ministry asked to increase flights to Tirupati as passenger footfall steadily goes up

Tirupati: The passenger footfall at the Tirupati airport is steadily increasing and is near the pre-COVID levels going by the footfall reported at the airport in the 11 months of 2021 even as the calendar year scarred by the COVID-19 second wave is finally drawing to an end.

According to the data provided by the Airports authority of India (AAI)- Tirupati, the passenger footfall reported at the Tirupati airport between January-November 2021 was 51,66,59. About 7,026 passenger flights hand landed and departed from the Tirupati airport in these 11 months span.

The month wise aircraft-passenger footfall data from January 2021-November 2021 is as follows: January - 739 aircrafts ferried 58065 passengers, February - 689 aircrafts ferried 59614 passengers, March - 893 aircrafts ferried 59579 passengers, April - 731 aircrafts ferried 37511 passengers, May - 232 aircrafts ferried 6698 passengers, June - 266 aircrafts ferried 17041 passengers, July - 518 aircrafts ferried 35545 passengers, August - 762 aircrafts ferried 60883 passengers, September - 634 aircrafts ferried 56739 passengers, October - 736 aircrafts ferried 61393 passengers and in November - 826 aircrafts ferried 63591 passengers.

Going by the data, the Tirupati airport registered highest passenger footfall in the month of November, while the lowest passenger footfall was reported in the month of May when the COVID-19 second wave impacted the country.

Meanwhile, with the passenger footfall steadily increasing at the Tirupati airport owing to a number of reasons including a hassle free issuance of Srivani donation linked VIP break darshan and issuance of a dedicated quota of Rs.300 special entry darshan tickets by the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams to different airlines, there has been a pent-up demand to connect the temple city to more cities across the country.

Speaking to TOI, Tirupati MP Dr M Gurumoorthy said that the Andhra Pradesh state government under the leadership of Chief minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy has already appealed to the civil aviation ministry to increase passenger flights to Tirupati under the RCS- UDAN scheme

10/12/21 Sandeep Raghavan/Times of India

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