Rajasthan’s minister of tourism and civil aviation Krishnendra Kaur ‘Deepa’ on Tuesday requested the Centre for air connectivity to major cities of the state to boost tourism.
Participating in a meeting of civil aviation ministers from states in Delhi’s Vigyan Bhawan, Deepa said Rajasthan has a distinct identity on country’s tourism map but it doesn’t have good air connectivity. This, she said, deprives many tourists from visiting Rajasthan and also causes loss of revenue to the state.
Speaking in the meeting, which was headed by Union civil aviation minister P Ashok Gajapathi Raju, Deepa said major cities in the state like Jaipur, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Udaipur and Kota etc should have regular flights between them. She said the state and Central governments could work on a six-year plan to work out viability and gap on these routes.
Deepa informed the meeting that almost all districts in Rajasthan have an airstrip and 16 of them are commercial viable. She requested the Union minister to direct the director general civil aviation (DGCA) to issue requisite licenses for starting commercial services from these airstrips.
The minister also demanded more international flights from Jaipur airport, adding that Udaipur and Jodhpur airports should be upgraded as international airports.
She also raised the issue of exorbitant prices of air travel. Deepa said the Centre should work on a price regulatory body for private operators to keep a check on the fares.
Minister of state for civil aviation Mahesh Sharma agreed with Rajasthan minister’s demand and said the state had a great culture and a rich history, a sure draw for tourists.