Recently, the Ministry of Civil Aviation has celebrated UDAN day on the 5th anniversary of the UDAN Scheme.
UDAN scheme (Ude Desh Ka Aam Nagrik) Scheme:
- It was launched as a regional connectivity scheme (RCS) under the Ministry of Civil Aviation in 2016.
- It is a key component of Centre’s National Civil Aviation Policy led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
- The scheme is implemented by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) and is operational for a period of 10 years
- It envisages providing connectivity to un-served and under-served airports of the country through the revival of existing airstrips and airports. Under-served airports are those which do not have more than one flight a day, while unserved airports are those where there are no operations.
- Under the scheme, nearly half of the seats in Udan flights are offered at subsidised fares, and the participating carriers are provided a certain amount of viability gap funding (VGF) – an amount shared between the Centre and the concerned states.
- Aim: It aims to develop the regional aviation market and to provide affordable, economically viable and profitable air travel on regional routes to the common man even in small towns.
- Funding: The scheme will be jointly funded by the central government and state governments.
- UDAN 4.0: The 4th phase of UDAN was launched in December 2019 with a special focus on North-Eastern Regions, Hilly States, and Islands. Under UDAN 4, the operation of helicopters and seaplanes has also been incorporated.