UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik) is a regional airport development and "Regional Connectivity Scheme" (RCS) launched by the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Government of India, on October 21, 2016. The scheme aims to make air travel more affordable and accessible to people in small towns and cities of India by developing regional airports and connecting them to major cities through affordable flights.
Airports and Air Connectivity Enhanced
Due to the UDAN RCS scheme, Airports and Air Connectivity have seen significant development and growth in recent years. Many unconnected regions are now connected via Air, reducing the time of travel and bringing employment opportunities. As we know, Airports are the development hubs and growth indicators of the economy and region; the number of Airports that became operational is also a significant measure of development.
This information was given by the Minister of State in the Ministry of Civil Aviation, General (Dr) V. K. Singh (Retd), in a written reply to an unstarred question in Rajya Sabha on February 13, 2023.
Also Read: Airports and RCS Routes Operationalized under UDAN in India
Airports Operationalised under UDAN
As on January 31, 2023, a total number of 73 unserved /underserved airports, including 9 Heliports and 2 water aerodromes, have been operationalised, since 2017, under the UDAN scheme.
UDAN is a self-financing and ongoing scheme where bidding rounds are conducted from time to time to cover more destinations/stations and routes under the scheme. Viability Gap Funding (VGF) amount of around Rs 2355 crore has been released to selected Airline Operators as of January 31, 2023, for the operation of UDAN flights.
The Government has approved the 'Revival of Unserved and Under-served Airports' scheme, aimed at reviving and developing 100 unserved and under-served airports, helipads, and water aerodromes by 2024.
UDAN Flight Operations in Punjab
For the details requested for the state of Punjab, Ministry has provided the below response.
As part of the UDAN scheme, the airports/airstrips in Ludhiana, Adampur, Bhatinda, and Pathankot in the state of Punjab have been identified for UDAN flight operations, with four rounds of bidding completed. Selected Airline Operators (SAOs) have begun operating UDAN flights from these airports.
Also Read: Upcoming Greenfield Airports in India to Cater for the Needs of Growing Air Passenger Traffic
List of RCS Airports operationalised as on February 06, 2023
The below list consists of a total of 73 Airports, including 19 Underserved and 54 Unserved Airports.
|S No.||State||Airport/Heliport/Water Aerodrome||Year of Operationalisation|
|13||Daman & Diu||Diu||2018|
|20||Statue of Unity (Water Aerodrome)||2020|
|21||Sabarmati River Front (Water Aerodrome)||2020|
|25||Mandi – Heliport||2021|
|26||Rampur – Heliport||2021|
|66||Sahastradhara - Heliport||2020|
|68||Gaucher – Heliport||2020|
|69||New Tehri – Heliport||2020|
|70||Srinagar – Heliport||2020|
|71||Haldwani – Heliport||2021|
|72||Almora – Heliport||2022|
The above list is the number of airports, heliports and water aerodromes operationalised in the country since 2017.