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Air India takes India’s first Krishi UDAN to London, Frankfurt

Air India has operated India’s first flight under Krishi UDAN programme between Mumbai and London on April 13, carrying 29 tons of fruits and vegetables
  • Air India operated its second flight between Mumbai and Frankfurt on April 15

  • Krishi UDAN scheme has been started by the government to assist farmers in transporting agricultural products abroad

New Delhi: It’s Maharaja to the rescue again! Air India has operated India’s first flight under Krishi UDAN programme between Mumbai and London on April 13, carrying 29 tons of fruits and vegetables to London and returning with 15.6 tons of general cargo material. Air India operated its second flight between Mumbai and Frankfurt on April 15 under the Krishi UDAN program, carrying 27 tons of seasonal fruits and vegetables to Frankfurt and returning with 10 tons of general cargo. Krishi UDAN scheme has been started by the government to assist farmers in transporting agricultural products abroad. The scheme was announced by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in February when she said, “Krishi Udan will be launched by the on international and national routes. This will immensely help improve value realisation (on agricultural products), especially in the north-east and tribal districts.”

Krishi UDAN an extension of the UDAN scheme

On the lines of the recently-launched Lifeline UDAN, which is aimed at transporting essential medical cargo to remote parts of the country to support India’s war against COVID-19, Krishi UDAN is an extension of the UDAN scheme. Under the UDAN scheme, financial incentives in terms of concessions from the Centre, state governments and airport operators are provided to selected airlines to encourage operations from unserved and undeserved airports, and keep airfares affordable. The programme is specifically aimed at connecting tier-II and tier-III cities in India and making flying affordable for the common man.

The backdrop

Air India has been at the helm of relief operations in the fight against the Coronavirus pandemic. It has so far operated 154 flights, along with Alliance Air, under Lifeline UDAN. Air India also lifted 3.76 tons of supplies to Colombo on April 8.