New Delhi : In a constant endeavour to connect Eastern India better, Union Minister of Civil Aviation Shri Jyotiraditya M. Scindia, MoS Civil Aviation & MoRTH, General Dr. V K Singh (Retd.) flagged off the first direct flight of Indigo airlines on Guwahati (Assam) to Pune (Maharashtra) route yesterday. Shri Chandra Mohan Patowary, Minister for Transport, Industries & Commerce, Skill Development, Welfare of Minorities, Government of Assam, Smt. Queen Oja, Member of Parliament – Lok Sabha, Shri. Bhubaneswar Kalita, Member of Parliament – Rajya Sabha, graced the event virtually from Guwahati and Sh. Girish Balchandra Bapat, Member of Parliament – Lok Sabha joined the event from Pune.
On the flight launch, Shri Scindia said that “I am delighted to witness this momentous occasion where the largest city of Northeast India – Guwahati, also called as Gateway to North East. The significance of Guwahati is not limited to North-East India, or entire India, or the entire world, the city of Guwahati finds its mentions across the ancient scriptures as well. At present times as well, Guwahati is called as the city of temples owing to the presence of temples such as Kamakhya Temple, Navagraha Temple, Umananda Temple & many more. Moreover, the city is one of the largest tea markets in the country. I am delighted to mention that 55% of our tea exports are generated from Guwahati alone. In addition to these, Guwahati is also home to oil refineries and education institutions such as IIT, TISS etc.”
The minister further added, “Guwahati is connected with 24 cities of the country with 885 aircraft movements. We are also putting in place a massive expansion & upgradation plan by increasing the terminal passenger capacity from 50 lac to 1 crore 20 lac per year, considering the opportunities available in Assam & Guwahati. The expansion cost of Rs. 1232 crores will be borne by the Central Government.”
The commencement of the flight operations on this route will assist the people of Guwahati and its adjoining areas as well as passengers from Pune with seamless movement between the two cities. Due to non-availability of any direct mode of transport, people had to suffer long journeys of more than 45 hours by road or train. Now, people can travel easily between the two cities by opting for a flight of 3 hours 15 minutes. With this new flight between Guwahati and Pune, common people will get multiple options for air connectivity which will boost trade, commerce and tourism of the region and will increase the economic activities between these regions.