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Shipping, Civil Aviation ministries sign MoU for seaplane service

New Delhi, June 15 (UNI): With an aim to develop seaplane service in the country, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between the Ministries of Ports, Shipping and Ministry of Civil Aviation on Tuesday.

Signing of this MoU is a major milestone for making seaplanes project a reality soon which will envisage development of non-scheduled/scheduled operation of seaplane services within territorial jurisdiction of India under RCS-UDAN scheme of government of India.

As per MoU, a co-ordination committee with officials of the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA), Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW) and Ministry of Tourism (MoT) is to be set up for timely completion of operationalisation of Seaplane services at various locations. MoCA, MoPSW, SDCL will consider operationalising of Seaplane operating routes as identified or suggested by all agencies.

“The MoPSW would identify and develop water front infrastructure of Aerodromes/ locations and obtain required statutory clearances /approvals in coordination with MoCA, DGCA and AAI by defining the timelines for all activities involved in the development of facilities for starting seaplanes operations,” the officials privy to this development said.

The Civil Aviation Ministry would carry out bidding and select potential airlines operators based on their commercial consideration through bidding process, incorporate the locations and routes as identified by MoPSW and routes identified through bidding process in UDAN scheme document.

The Civil Avaiation Ministry is also obliged to provide funds/financial support in respect of water aerodromes awarded under RCS-UDAN scheme and coordinate with Chief Secretaries of all States for the Seaplanes operations.

On the occasion, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep S Puri, said that this MoU between the two Ministries will help in expediting the development of new water aerodromes and also operationalisation of new seaplane routes in India, adding fillip to the provision of a new kind of tourism service in India.

At the occasion, the Port and Shipping Minister Mansukh Mandaviya stated that signing of this MoU will be a game changer both for Indian Maritime and Civil Aviation sector as it will not only enhance seamless connectivity across the nation by promoting eco-friendly transportation through Seaplanes but also give a boost to the tourism industry.

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