New Delhi: Lifeline Udan flights cover over 3 lakh km of aerial distance to transport around 507.85 tons of essential medical cargo. 301 flights have been operated under Lifeline Udan by Air India, Alliance Air, IAF and private carriers. 184 of these flights have been operated by Air India and Alliance Air.. ‘Lifeline Udan’ flights are being operated by MoCA to transport essential medical cargo to remote parts of the country to support India’s war against COVID-19.
Helicopter services including Pawan Hans Ltd have been operating in J&K, Ladakh, Islands and North East region transporting critical medical cargo and patients. Pawan Hans till 19 April 2020 have carried 1.90 tons of cargo covering a distance of 6537 kms. The domestic Lifeline Udan cargo includes COVID-19 related reagents, enzymes, medical equipment, testing kits, Personal protective equipment (PPE), masks, gloves, other materials of HLL and ICMR; cargo requisitioned by State/UT Governments and postal packets etc.
Special focus has been on the North East Region, island territories and the hill states. Air India and IAF collaborated primarily for J&K, Ladakh, North-East and other island regions. Bulk of the cargo comprises light-weight and voluminous products like masks, gloves and other consumables, that consume relatively larger storage space on the aircraft. Special permission has been taken to store cargo in the passenger seating area and overhead cabins, with due precautions.
A portal for coordinating Lifeline Udan flights was developed by National Informatics Centre (NIC) and MoCA to enable seamless coordination between various stakeholders. Public information related to Lifeline Udan flights is updated daily on the portal at https://esahaj.gov.in/lifeline_udan/public_info.
Domestic Cargo Operators SpiceJet, Blue Dart and Indigo are operating cargo flights on a commercial basis. Spicejet operated 427 cargo flights during 24 March to 19 April 2020 covering a distance of 6,29,325 km and carrying 3414 tons of cargo. Out of these 135 were international cargo flights. Blue Dart operated 141 domestic cargo flights covering a distance of 1, 39, 179 km and carrying 2241 tons of cargo during 25 March to 19 April 2020. Indigo has operated 33 cargo flights during 3-19 April 2020 covering a distance of 37,160 km and carrying around 66 tons of cargo. This also includes medical supplies carried free of cost for the government.