Source: News Bharati English18 Nov 2016 18:07:08

New Delhi, Nov 18: In an attempt to improve the domestic connectivity government of India has received 20 registrations from private air operators under the regional connectivity scheme.

Speaking at the Aero Expo India-2016 organised by the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Civil Aviation Secretary Rajiv Nayan Choubey said that these commercial operators would connect small towns in the country.

He also informed that government has set December 5, 2016, as the proposal due date for the process.  Domestic aviation sector is expected to see more than 20 per cent growth in the next three years which also poses challenges, Choubey said. "We have to be ahead of the growth curve," he added.

Government has designated Airports Authority of India as a nodal agency for the scheme said Choubey. The central government is expected to provide concessions in the form of reduced excise duty and service tax, state governments will have to lower the VAT (value added tax) on ATF (air turbine fuel) to one per cent or less.

Earlier Aviation Minister P. Ashok Gajapathi Raju informed that the first flight under RCS is expected to be operated by January 2017. Under the scheme UDAN (Ude Desh Ka Aam Naagrik) the main objective of this scheme is to enhance air passenger traffic in the country by stimulating demand on regional routes.

The UDAN scheme will be in operation for a period of 10 years. The scheme is a key component of National Civil Aviation Policy (NCAP).