Regional air services to take wing on five new routes at Karnataka

Bengaluru-Salem and Mysuru-Chennai routes will be operational in a few weeks; State government proposes incentives such as Metro connectivity to RCS airports.

Published: 26th April 2017 04:27 AM  |   Last Updated: 26th April 2017 06:39 AM   |  A+A-

File Image for Representational Purposes. | Reuters

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Air connectivity between Mysuru-Chennai and Bengaluru-Salem and also some other smaller towns could soon be a reality. As part of the Regional Connectivity Service (RCS), some airlines have come forward to operate on the two routes and the services are expected to start in the next few weeks.

Official sources in the Commerce and Industries Department said that as part of the RCS initiative, the state government is offering concessions to airlines operating on the RCS routes. This includes electricity, water and other utility services at concessional rates.

The government has also proposed to provide rail or Metro connectivity to RCS airports in coordination with the Centre. Security and fire services will be provided free of cost at government-run RCS airports. As for as private RCS airports, it will be examined on a case-to-case basis.

An official in the Industries Department said that five airlines have come forward to provide air connectivity between different cities and towns. “Five routes have been finalised in Karnataka and of them, two to three routes are expected to be operational in the next few weeks,’’ he said.

The official said services from Bengaluru and Mysuru will be operationalised soon. This includes Bengaluru-Salem and Mysuru-Chennai. The Bengaluru-Bidar route is also expected to operational in some time.

However, the Bengaluru-Vidyanagar (Ballari) route and also some other routes connecting Vidyanagar are being examined. “Since it is an unserved airport and owned by private firm, some security issues have not yet been cleared. It will take some time. This route will be operated by TruJet Airways,’’ the official said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik -- Let the Common Man fly) initiative at Shimla on April 27. Five airlines will operate on 128 routes connecting 70 airports including 31 unserved and 12 under-served ones across the country.

UDAN flights will connect airports spread across 20 states and Union Territories including Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh.

Recently, the Ministry of Civil Aviation and the Karnataka government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).  In Karnataka, the Union government has identified 19 airports for development and upgrade.


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