NEW DELHI: Ministry of Civil Aviation has launched Regional Connectivity Scheme – UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik) on 21-10-2016 to stimulate regional air connectivity and making air travel affordable to the masses.
Under the UDAN scheme connectivity is enhanced by reviving unserved and underserved airports and by giving financial (Viability Gap Funding or VGF) support to meet the gap, if any, between the cost of airline operations and expected revenues on such UDAN routes. In addition to VGF, concessions to the Selected Airlines Operators (SAOs) are offered by Central Government, State Government and airport operator for operation of UDAN flights.
Different fixed wing aircraft (including seaplanes), based on their seating capacity, have been classified into the following four (4) categories for the purpose of UDAN Scheme based on seating capacity.
1. Category-1A – <9 passengers
2. Category-1 – 9 – 20 passengers
3. Category-2 – 21 – 80 passengers
4. Category-3 – > 80 passengers
In UDAN 3.0 and 4.0, a small aircraft operator under Category-1A was awarded 26 RCS routes. For Details of these 26 RCS routes, click here
UDAN is a market driven scheme. The interested airlines based on their assessment of demand on particular routes submit their proposals at the time of bidding under UDAN from time to time. Airports Authority of India (AAI), the Implementing Agency, provides VGF to SAOs for operation of UDAN flights.
The VGF for UDAN flights is generated from within the sector by imposing a levy per departure, primarily on trunk routes. Besides the VGF and concessions, SAOs also get exclusivity right of operation of UDAN flight for a period of three years on the awarded route under UDAN scheme.
This information was given in a written reply by Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, Minister of State (I/C), Civil Aviation in Lok Sabha.