Five upcoming airports in Maharashtra await bidders

The Ratnagiri, Gondia, Sindhudurg, Amravati and Solapur airports still haven’t been built due to lack of willingness to take up the bid by bidders. All these airports will be a part of the central-connectivity programme, UDAN after they are constructed.


Two years ago, Maharashtra government had announced that five out of the 10 airports in the state would be developed under the central scheme of Udey Desh Ka Aam Nagrik (UDAN). However, the airports are still waiting for bidders even after allotting routes in two rounds.

UDAN, a part of the National Civil Aviation Policy, was announced in 2016 with an aim to make air travel available and affordable for everyone. The state government had signed a deal in 2016 with the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) and the Airports Authority of India (AAI) to develop 10 airfields under UDAN.

Shirdi, Amravati, Gondia, Nashik, Jalgaon, Nanded, Solapur, Kolhapur, Ratnagiri and Sindhudurg airports will be developed as the part of the First Phase. Out of which, Shirdi and Nanded, are state-government owned.

At present, the airports at Nashik, Nanded, Kolhapur and Jalgaon are functional whereas the Ratnagiri, Gondia, Sindhudurg and Amravati airports are yet to be made. The infrastructure work of the Solapur airport has been completed but the airport hasn’t been functional as AAI detected a chimney being an obstruction in the flight’s path.

Sindhudurg is a new airport, unless it is constructed it cannot be eligible under UDAN. Ratnagiri is a coastguard airport and the government expects it to be available for UDAN only in 2019. Amravati is awaiting bidders. An airport cannot be developed under UDAN unless an airline asks us for allocation of the route. It is after this that we award the route to them. We cannot develop any airport unless demand is seen and bidders bid for it.” A senior AAI official told Hindustan Times

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