There are 26 airports across the country owned by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) that remain unutilised, the government said on Wednesday. While the AAI earns no revenue from these airports as they remain shut, it has had to spend ₹11.67 crore on their maintenance over the past four years, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri told the Rajya Sabha in response to a question. Among these are airports at Asansol, Balurghat and Malda in West Bengal; Khandwa, Panna and Satna in Madhya Pradesh; and Vellore and Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu.
Only two of the 26 airports are civil enclaves or Indian Air Force airstrips, where AAI has a terminal building for passengers.
Under the government’s UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik) scheme, which aims to improve air connectivity to tier-2 and tier-3 cities and offer cheaper air travel with prices capped at ₹1,500 per hour of flight, 39 unused airports have been revived since 2017. Read More