New Delhi/Guwahati: Airports Authority of India (AAI) in its continuous endeavour to link under-served and un-served airports through regional connectivity scheme (RCS) routes has started its regular flight services at Rupsi Airport in Assam. The first commercial flight of Flybig Airline landed on Saturday at 12:07 hrs marking the beginning of the new era at Rupsi, in Dhubri District of Assam and adjoining area.
As a gesture of welcome, the water cannon salute was accorded to the incoming flight by the Rupsi Airport officials. All safety checks and mandatory security arrangements were done prior to arrival. Considering the COVID-19 guidelines, the proper marking and distancing measures were also ensured for all passengers. Earlier on May 5, a trial flight was tested and operational requirements were checked successfully.
Altogether 24 passengers arrived from Guwahati on the inaugural flight at Rupsi on Saturday. Late it departed for Kolkata at around 12:40 hrs.
Informing about the services, Airport In-Charge Jyotirmoy Barua said that it a historic moment for all of us at Rupsi as regular flight services has started under the RCS-UDAN programme of the government. It will ensure affordable flying for all especially the lower-income group population here. UDAN flight provides cheap airfares for short destinations, connecting the unconnected. I am happy that everything was smooth and coordination from all agencies are appreciated, expect the same from all here at Rupsi, he added.
Flybig Airline was awarded routes under the UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik) scheme of the government of India to operate flight service at Rupsi by the Ministry of Civil Aviation through a bidding process. It will operate flights on the Guwahati-Rupsi-Kolkata route and back. Initially, it will operate on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday as informed by the airline.
AAI has re-developed this world war-II ear airstrip of Assam at an estimated cost of Rs 69 crore. The foundation stone for this re development project was laid by Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal in February 2019.
Spread across 337 acres, the newly developed airport has a terminal building measuring 3,500 sqm. equipped with 10 check-in counters, the terminal is designed to manage about 200 passengers during peak hours. The newly built runway is suitable for landing ATR-72 type aircraft.
The operationalisation of Rupsi Airport will help boost the local economy of the Bodoland area and provide better connectivity to the air travellers of the adjacent districts from Dhubri, Bongaigaon, Kokarajhar, Goalpara as well as districts in the neighbouring states of Meghalaya, West Bengal and parts of Bhutan as well.
Arriving first passengers were welcomed by the Airport in-charge and the airline staff honouring them with traditional gamocha.
AAI Officers, airline employees, state government officials, state police security personnel and other dignitaries were also present on this auspicious occasion and encourage the passengers.
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