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UDAN scheme: Govt to allow smaller planes to operate in priority areas

The viability gap funding for helicopters will be increased among other concessions

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Representative image
Representative image

To improve regional air connectivity, the on Thursday announced increasing viability gap funding for helicopter operators and allowing smaller planes, among other concessions, under the scheme.

The regional connectivity scheme -- -- seeks to connect unserved and under-served as well as make flying more affordable as fares are capped at Rs 2,500 for one-hour

Announcing the changes made to the scheme after detailed consultations with stakeholders in the past few months, Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju said the scheme is being liberalised, especially in the sense of focusing on priority areas.

In the second round that started today, smaller aircraft will be allowed to operate RCS in priority areas, including north eastern states and Uttarakhand.

Besides, the viability gap funding for operating under the scheme will be increased.

The winners of the second round of under are to be announced by November-end.

Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey asserted that there will be no compromise on safety and security of

"We find that first round (of UDAN) is more or less on track," Raju said.

In the first round of bidding, as many as 128 connecting 70 unserved and under-served were awarded.

First Published: Thu, August 24 2017. 15:18 IST