State-run Air India's subsidiary Alliance Air launched a direct service from Kalaburagi in north Karnataka to Bengaluru and Mysuru in the state's southern region, an official said on Friday.
"The daily service between Kalaburagi and Mysuru via Bengaluru will be operated under the regional connectivity scheme (RCS) of the central government called Udan (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik)," said the official in a statement in Bengaluru.
Kalaburagi is about 580 km north of the southern state capital Bengaluru.
Built by the state-run Airport Authority of India (AAI) in partnership with the state government, the airport was opened for operations on November 22, over a decade after its foundation was laid on June 14, 2008.
"The regional airport has enabled direct air connectivity between the state capital (Bengaluru) and the city of palaces (Mysuru) with Kalaburagi, an important commercial and pilgrim centre in the state's norther region.
Spread over 567 acres of farmlands near Srinivas Sardagi, the airport has 3.25 km-long runway, making it the second longest in the state after the international airport at Devanahalli in north Bengaluru.
The 3-hour flight will reduce the travel duration from 12-15 hours between Kalaburagi and Mysuru via Bengaluru by train or bus.
The feeder airline operates 70-seater turbo-prop aircraft on the route.
"From Sufi city to the city of palaces, Alliance Air has connected Kalaburagi with Bengaluru and Mysuru under Udan-RCS with daily flights," tweeted the Civil Aviation Ministry.
The northern town in the erstwhile Hyderabad-Karnataka region is popular for the holy shrine (dargah) of Sufi saint Hazrath Khaja Banda Nawaz Gaisu Daraz (1321-1422) of the Chisti order, who has lakhs of followers in South Asia.
The flight departs from Mysuru at 8:30 a.m. and arrives in Bengaluru at 9.10 a.m. and leaves at 9:50 a.m. and lands in Kalaburagi at 11:25 a.m..
The return flight from Kalaburagi at 11.50 a.m. arrives in Bengaluru at 1.30 p.m. and departs at 2 p.m. and lands in Mysuru at 2.50 p.m..