Airport Authority of India- the implementing agency of the Regional Connectivity scheme announces the fourth round of bidding for adding more airlines and operators to the hinterland air connectivity. The bidding process begins from December 3rd December from prospective Airline operators to serve the un-served and under-served regions of the country under a viability gap funding (VGF) programme of government of India.
Like in the previous rounds, UDAN sccheme is expected to attract New and Existing airline operators to latch on the growth Trajectory of the burgeoning Aviation industry of the country.
Udhe Desh ka Aam Nagarik roughly translates as Anybody can Fly in India, opens again to enlist the regional operators/ airlines with remote airports in yet another round of connecting the vast hinterland of India to the Metro and Mini metro Air Hubs. The scheme which envisages development of regional airport infrastructure across the territories of India, to increase the number of operational airports with regular flight operations. The ambitious scheme was inaugurated by the Modi led government to give tail winds to the fastest growing aviation market in the world, in April 2017.
The scheme also subsidises the airlines operating the UDAN or Regional connectivity system to the extent of loss they may incur on the unoccupied seats of the flights. The scheme also caps the fares of these flights to INR 2500 or US$ 35 for a flight duration of 1 hour.
The first round of bidding in April 2017 saw the bidding for 128 new routes by 5 airlines viz Air Odisha ( 50 routes), Air Deccan(34 routes), Turbo Megha Airlines( 18 routes), Alliance Air(15 routes) and Spicejet (11 routes). The second round of bidding that happened in December 2017 also saw the participation of more airlines in the network that was followed by third round in January 2019.