Chandigarh/ New Delhi: Giving a major boost to regional air connectivity, Government of India gave licences to Air India subsidiary and Spice jet on Thursday to operate on 128 routes connecting 70 airports of which 31 are unserved with fares being capped at Rs 2,500 for one-hour flights.
These flights will connect airports spread across over 20 states and union territories including Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.
Air Odisha Aviation got maximum number of 50 routes followed by Air Deccan (34) and Turbo Megha Airways (18). The AI subsidiary Airline Allied Services will operate on 15 routes while Spice Jet won bids for 11 routes.
The first flight under UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik) is expected to start next month, Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey said. As many as 70 airports, including 31 unserved and 12 under-served ones, would be connected with the UDAN flights.
Announcing the names of winning bidders and the routes, Choubey said 128 routes are being awarded to a total of five operators. The carriers will operate 19-78 seater aircraft. The airports that will be connected under UDAN include Bhatinda, Shimla, Bilaspur, Neyveli, Cooch Behar, Nanded and Kadapa.
On each flight, 50 per cent of the seats would have a cap of Rs 2,500 per seat/hour, Choubey said. Referring to the new operators under UDAN, the Minister said, “I guess when we start anything we don’t move prophecies of doom…
We wish the airlines here will be serving the Indian skies”. Airports Authority of India (AAI) is the implementing agency for UDAN.DP
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