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Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: The much awaited maiden air service between Bhubaneswar and Raipur of Chhatisgarh kicked off from Biju Patnaik International Airport (BPIA) in the city here today.

The 18-seater plane with two pilots and a cabin crew member will depart Bhubaneswar airport at 6:10 AM and arrive at Raipur around 7:40 AM. The return flight from Raipur will begin at 12:15 PM and reach Bhubaneswar at 1:40 PM. The flight services will be available six days a week except Sunday.

Flagging off the flight, BPIA Director Suresh Chandra Hota said “It is a matter of pride that a flight service named after the state begins today. Earlier there was no connectivity between the two capital cities of Odisha and Chhattisgarh and the new service will help both these states grow.”

With the introduction of the new air service, distance between Bhubaneswar and Raipur can now be covered in just 1.5 hours. Passengers will have to shell out Rs 4, 500 per head since the 20-seater aircraft is yet to be included under the Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) of Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA).

The scheduled flight service will also be extended to Jharsuguda and Rourkela in coming days, informed sources.

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