Commercial flights are likely to start operations from the Hindon airport near Delhi by the end of June as the Ministry of Defence has given all requisite approvals, said a senior official of the Airports Authority of India (AAI). Hindon airport, which is around 40 km from the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi, belongs to the Indian Air Force (IAF) and the AAI has developed the civil enclave there.
"The Ministry of Defence has approved the proposal of Ghodawat Enterprises for the operation of RCS (regional air connectivity scheme) flights from Hindon airport...These RCS flights are likely to commence by end of June this year," the AAI official told PTI. Ghodawat Enterprises run the airline brand Star Air that is headquartered in Bengaluru. Under the Civil Aviation Ministry's regional air connectivity scheme -- UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik) -- many airline operators including IndiGo have bagged routes connecting from Hindon.
"However, the Ministry of Defence has approved the proposal of Ghodawat Enterprises, which runs Star Air, only as yet," said another AAI official. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 8 had inaugurated the new civil enclave at Hindon airport from where commercial flights would be operated. The civil enclave, which cost around Rs 40 crore, can handle 300 passengers during peak hours. The airport infrastructure was developed by the AAI while the approach road to the airport was constructed by the Uttar Pradesh government. The operations were expected to begin from March 15. However, discussions with the Indian Air Force regarding slots took a long time.