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NEW DELHI: Under the regional connectivity scheme UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik), over 1.1 crore passengers have flown since the it came into force in 2016, said Union civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya M. Scindia on Thursday.

Replying to the questions in Lok Sabha, the minister said, “More than 2.15 lakh UDAN flights have operated and over 1.1 crore passengers have availed the benefits in UDAN flights so far. The scheme has been able to provide air connectivity to Tier-2 &Tier-3 cities at affordable airfares and has transformed the way people travel."

The scheme was initiated on 21 October 2016 with the objective to fulfil aspirations of people, with an enhanced aviation infrastructure and air connectivity in tier II and tier III cities.

As on 29 November 2022, after four rounds of bidding under UDAN, 453 routes have commenced, operationalizing 70 airports including two water aerodrome and nine heliports.

The UDAN scheme is applicable for a period of 10 years from the date of its notification. The central government has set a target of operationalising 1000 UDAN routes, and revive/develop 100 unserved & underserved airports/heliports/water aerodromes by 2024.

According to the Ministry of Civil Aviation, the government has approved a budget of 4500 crore for revival of existing unserved / underserved airports / airstrips of state governments,Airports Authority of India, public sector undertakings and civil enclaves.

Airports Authority of India (AAI), the implementing agency, monitors the progress for the revival/development of awarded aerodromes under UDAN and the same is reviewed by the ministry in consultation with stakeholders time to time.

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