25 October, 2020

6 Min Read

GS-II : Government policies and interventions
India's First Seaplane Project

India’s First Seaplane Project

  • A seaplane is a fixed-wing aeroplane designed for taking off and landing on water.
  • There are two main types of seaplanes: flying boats (often called hull seaplanes) and floatplanes.
  • India's first seaplane service in Gujarat, is set to start from 31st October 2020, the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, with the aim of providing air connectivity between the Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad and the Statue of Unity in Kevadia.
  • The seaplane will be operated by SpiceJet. It is a 19-seater seaplane, which will be able to accommodate 14 passengers.
  • In the next phase, Dharoi dam (Mehsana district) will connect Ambaji and Shatrunjay dam (Bhavnagar district) and Tapi district.

UDAN (Ude Desh ke Aam Nagrik), 2016

  • It is a regional connectivity scheme to develop smaller regional airports to allow easier access to aviation services. It is a part of National Civil Aviation Policy (NCAP).
  • Objectives
  1. Operationalization and development of 425 underserved and unserved airports.
  2. Boost inclusive economic development by faster connectivity.
  3. Development of air transport infrastructure in remote areas.
  • It is funded jointly by Center and States. Duration is of 10 years. Airlines are selected through competitive bidding process.
  • Center will provide VGF, concessional GST on tickets, etc.
  • State will provide land for airport, trained security personnel, 20% of VGF. VGF is not give to cargo airlines.
  • Exclusivity for 3 years in routes. 2500 per 1 hour flight.

UDAN Phase 1.0 to 4.0

  • UDAN 1.0: Under this phase, 5 airlines companies were awarded 128 flight routes to 70  airports (including 36 newly made operational airports)
  • UDAN 2.0: In 2018, the MoCA announced 73 underserved and unserved  airports. For the first time, helipads were also connected.
  • UDAN 3.0: Inclusion of Tourism Routes in coordination with the Ministry of Tourism. Inclusion of Seaplanes for connecting Water Aerodromes. Bringing in a number of routes in the North-East Region.
  • UDAN 4.0: seeks to offer priority routes connecting Bilaspur and Ambikapur airports in Chhattisgarh.

International UDAN Scheme

  • It is an extension of UDAN to connect India's smaller cities to some key foreign destinations in neighborhood.
  • It will utilise Open Skies policy which India and Asian countries allow direct and unlimited flights to 18 Indian destinations.
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