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Flights start from Mumbai to Keshod in Gujarat for first time under UDAN scheme

Flight on Keshod-Mumbai route under RCS UDAN flagged off.

Flight operations have for the first time commenced on the Keshod-Mumbai route under the UDAN regional connectivity scheme of the Government of India.

Alliance Air will operate thrice a week flights on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday and will deploy it’s ATR 72-600, 70-seater turbo prop aircraft designed for shorter distance flights on the route. 

Alliance Air was awarded the route under the UDAN RCS-4.1 bidding process and has become the first airline to connect Keshod to Mumbai. With this, 417 routes would be operationalized under the UDAN-RCS scheme.

The inaugural event was flagged off by Union Minister of Civil Aviation Jyotiraditya M. Scindia in the presence of Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendrabhai Patel.

Speaking on the occasion, Scindia said, “Two famous world-renowned tourist attractions – Somnath Temple and Gir National Park located near Keshod will now become accessible from Mumbai.”

Keshod is a tourist destination in Junagarh district of Gujarat and it is surrounded by Arabian Sea and beautiful forests. At present, it takes about 16 Hours to travel by road from Keshod to Mumbai which will be reduced to just 1 hour 25 minutes with the commencement of the new flight.

“Various industries are established in Keshod such as furniture, textile, chemicals, cement etc which will also be benefited from the commencement of the new flight route,” he explained.

The minister said, “Apart from starting the new flight route today, we will also connect Keshod with the state capital Ahmedabad. In this year's summer schedule, Ahmedabad has been connected to 3 cities in India – Amritsar, Agra and Ranchi. Similarly, Porbandar and Rajkot have been connected with Mumbai.

Two new greenfield airports are also be constructed in Hirasar and Dholera which will have 23 lakh passengers per year and 30 lakh passengers per year with a budget allocation of Rs 1,405 crore and Rs 1,305 crore respectively”.

A special route connecting Porbandar and Delhi will also start on 27th April, Scindia added.

Keshod Airport is owned by Airports Authority of India (AAI). Initially, the airport was refurbished and revived in late 1980s to facilitate scheduled operations. Since last 21 years, commercial aircraft has not landed at this airport.

AAI has invested an amount of Rs. 25 crores to upgrade Keshod airport for resurfacing of Runway, procurement of Aircraft Crash Fire Tender, new Civil Enclave including Terminal Building, Apron for two ATR-72 types of aircraft and Link Taxiway.