Seventy-eight new routes including Delhi to Bareilly and Shimla under the regional connectivity scheme (RCS) – Ude Deshka Aam Nagrik (UDAN) – have been approved following three successful rounds of bidding organised by the Ministry of Civil Aviation.
This will further enhance the connectivity to remote and regional areas of the country. The north eastern region, hilly states and islands have been given priority in the approval process for the new routes.
A special boost is being given to connectivity in the North East with routes from Guwahati to Tezu, Rupsi, Tezpur, Pasighat, Misa and Shillong.
People will be able to fly from Hisar to Chandigarh, Dehradun and Dharamshala under these UDAN 4 routes.
Routes from Varanasi to Chitrakoot and Shravasti have also been approved. Agatti, Kavaratti and Minicoy Islands of Lakshadweep have also been connected by the new routes of UDAN 4.0.
So far, 766 routes have been sanctioned under the UDAN scheme. Twenty-nine served, eight unserved (including two heliports and one water aerodrome), and two underserved airports have been included in the list for approved routes.
The fourth round of UDAN was launched in December 2019 with a special focus on north eastern regions, hilly states and islands.
The airports that had already been developed by Airport Authority of India (AAI) are given higher priority for the award of VGF (viability gap funding) under the scheme.
Under UDAN 4, the operation of helicopters and seaplanes has also been incorporated. Since its inception, Ministry of Civil Aviation has operationalised 274 UDAN routes that have connected 45 airports and three heliports.
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