Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: Flight services to Jharsuguda from Bhubaneswar under Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik (UDAN) scheme is likely to begin from September later this year, Chief Secretary A P Padhi informed media after the first state level monitoring meeting today.

“We have decided to operationalise the flight route between  Bhubaneswar and Jharsuguda from September while for other routes like Jeypore, Rourkela and Utkela we need some time for the preparations before they are opened up for flights,” Padhi said.

On the other hand Rourkela Steel Plant has denied participating in operationalising flight services to the steel city, so the government is working to sort out the issue, he added.

Padhi said Jeypore and Utkela which are also scheduled to be operational will need some more time. “We need more infrastructure and so it might take another month or two,” Padhi said.

The state government will bear the entire cost of security, safety, airport management and fire. Besides, 20 percent of the liability gap funding provided to the airlines will also be borne by the state government, Padhi added.

UDAN scheme is a flagship program of the Union Government launched last October which aims at boosting air connectivity to and from unserved and under-served airports and make flying more affordable for general public under which fares have been capped at Rs 2,500 for a one-hour flight.