First direct flight operations flagged off on Imphal - Shillong route under UDAN


NEW DELHI: The first direct flight operations between Imphal (Manipur) and Shillong (Meghalaya) was flagged off on Tuesday under the Regional Connectivity Scheme — Ude Desh Ka Aam Nagrik (RCS-UDAN) of the Government of India.

“The operationalization of this route fulfills the objectives of the Government of India to establish strong aerial connectivity in priority areas of NorthEast India,” said a press release by the Ministry of Civil Aviation.

From now onwards, people can easily fly between the two cities by opting for a flight of just 60 mins from Imphal to Shillong and 75 mins from Shillong to Imphal. Earlier, the completion of the entire journey took more than a day to reach Shillong from Imphal or vice-versa, the press release further said.

To date, 361 routes and 59 airports (including 5 heliports and 2 water aerodromes) have been operationalized under the UDAN scheme, added the press release.

The aerial connectivity between the capital cities of Manipur and Meghalaya has been a long-awaited demand of the people of the region, it further said.

Shillong is the second city to be connected with Imphal under the UDAN scheme. The airline M/s Indigo was awarded the Imphal-Shillong route during the UDAN 4 bidding process.

The airlines are being provided Viability Gap Funding (VGF) under the UDAN scheme to keep the fares affordable & accessible for the common people, The airline will be operating four flights in a week and will deploy its 78-seater ATR 72 aircraft. Currently, 66 UDAN routes are operational by M/S Indigo airlines.

The scheme is envisaged to establish strong aerial connectivity in all States and UT of the country which hitherto was not connected, laying the foundation of a new regional segment in India’s aviation market. (ANI)