India will make operational 50 new airports, helipads, and aerodromes to improve regional connectivity, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced while presenting the Union Budget 2023-24.

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“50 additional airports, aerodromes, helipads, and water routes to be built to enhance connectivity,” she said.

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Advanced landing grounds has also been announced for drones.

The Economic Survey released on Tuesday said “air travel (in India) has rebounded” with passenger and cargo movement being close to pre-Covid levels. The total number of passengers carried in December 2022 was 1.50 lakh, up 1.06 per cent of the pre-Covid levels (average of April 2019 to February 2020).

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Cargo tonnage till November stood at 2.5 lakh MT which is 89 per cent of the pre-Covid levels.