The Ministry of Civil Aviation has launched Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) – UDAN (Ude Deshka Aam Nagrik) on 21-10-2016 to stimulate regional air connectivity and making air travel affordable to the masses. UDAN is a market driven scheme. An airport which is included in the awarded routes of UDAN and requires upgradation/development for commencement of RCS operations, is developed under “Revival of unserved and underserved airports” scheme. Airports Authority of India(AAI), the Implementing Agency has identified 154 RCS airports including 14 water aerodromes and 36 helipads so far under UDAN for operation of RCS flights. Airports Authority of India(AAI), the Implementing Agency, has awarded 948 routes, from which, 405 routes involving 65 airports including 8 heliports and 2 water aerodromes have been operationalized under UDAN as on 09.03.2022.
Besides Viability Gap Funding (VGF), other concessions from Central, State Governments and airport operators are extended to Selected Airline Operators (SAOs) to encourage operations from unserved/underserved airports/heliports/water aerodromes and to keep the air fare affordable.
While launching the UDAN Scheme in 2016, the Government had capped the Airfare at Rs. 2500 for a distance of 500 km to 600 km per seat under Regional Connectivity routes (equivalent to one-hour flight). The capping is subject to indexation as per the formula specified in the UDAN Scheme document.
This information was given by the Minister of State in the Ministry of Civil Aviation (Gen. (Dr) V. K. Singh Retd) in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha on Monday.