LUCKNOW: A day before Akasa Air is scheduled to start two flights from Lucknow – one to Bengaluru and the other to Mumbai – chief minister Yogi Adityanath met airline officials and was handed over the first symbolic boarding pass.
He congratulated the state and the airline officials for the commencement of Akasa Air services from the state capital.


Calling it a happy occasion that the services were starting on the birth anniversary of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who was elected MP from Lucknow for five terms, the CM said: “UP is benefitting massively from the Udaan scheme started by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He has allowed people from even the lowest rungs of society to dream of travelling by air. The improving air services in UP are a realisation of this dream.”
Akasa Air was represented by its CEO Vinay Dubey, co-founder Neelu Khatri, co-founder Pravin Aiyar and other senior officials. Asking them about details of their business model, routes, fuel consumption etc, the CM said that along with Lucknow which is being connected to Mumbai and Bengaluru, Varanasi should also be connected to these routes.
The Varanasi route has maximum passengers and this will be beneficial for both the residents of the state and for the airlines, he said. He also suggested that Akasa Air start air services from Lucknow, Varanasi and Kushinagar to Kathmandu in Nepal. There is a great demand for this route among countries with a large Buddhist population, he said.
The Chief Minister further said that connectivity has a huge role to play in increasing the pace of development. To that end, the government is trying to connect maximum cities in the state with expressways and air services. He told the visiting officials that before 2017, there were primarily two airports functional in the state, Lucknow and Varanasi while two others were semi operational. Between these four, 25 destinations were served. Right now, nine airports are functional and are serving 75 destinations. Another 10 airports are under construction.
He added that Uttar Pradesh would soon have five international airports -Varanasi, Kushinagar and Lucknow are operational while Jewar and Ayodhya are under progress.
“It is the government’s responsibility to ensure better connectivity for the 25 crore people in the state and to provide them with good air connectivity. Air connectivity is not ordinary connectivity but very beneficial in improving and increasing tourism potential of the state,” the CM said.

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