Mumbai, May 8: The Modi government announced regional connectivity scheme UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik) on April 27, 2017. The scheme was to firm the regional connectivity between different regions all around the country. However, on the other Hand, five air lines have become defunct between year 2016 to 2019 and the Air India, which was leading air lines on country, has closed many offices and they have been working directly from the Airports for cost cutting. This is raising questions on seriousness of ministry of civil aviation to improve the connectivity.
Initially, out of total 486 airports, 406 were participating unserved airports, 27 were well served airports out of 97 non-RCS airports and 12 were operational airports out of 18 participating underserved regional operational airports (Nov 2016) with regular fixed-wing scheduled flights. UDAN scheme was scheduled to add to this number by expediting the development and operationalisation of India’s potential-target of nearly 425 unserved, underserved, and mostly underdeveloped regional airports with regular scheduled flights. By the end of Phase I in April 2017, five airlines companies were awarded 128 fixed-wing flight routes to 70 airports (including 36 newly made operational airports), it included Turbo Megha, SpiceJet, Air Odisha, Deccan Charter, Alliance Air. Out of which Air Odisha has lost the contract due to poor performance.
The take off and landing of air companies
Air Odisha – February 2018, 60% of Air Odisha’s stake was sold to GSEC Monarch Aviation, an Adani Group enterprise
Air Pegasus – April 2016 to July 2016
Zoom Air – February 2017 to July 2018
Jet Airways – 5 May 1993 to 17 April 2019
Jet Lite – 3 December 1993 to 17 April 2019
Why the Air companies have stopped functioning
On the condition of anonymity, the Jet Airways source has mentioned that the lack of seriousness from Civil Aviation has made the companies pay the price. The ministry is not at all serious about air companies. Today, around 20,000 employees of Jet are doing protest in front of all international airports, but, not a single person is ready to discuss the situation. Many routes under Udan are also getting delayed to start.
Effect on national and international market
Discontinuation of flights is leading to a huge economic loss as many international tourists have cancelled travelling to India. When the international tourist arrives in India, he spends a huge amount of money on different aspects while travelling and stay. This is also affecting the image of country as aviation is considered most important aspect of connectivity.