Gorakhpur/Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Sunday inaugurated Spice Jet’s Gorakhpur-Varanasi flight via video-conferencing and said that at present, there are nine functional airports in the state, connecting 75 destinations across the country. Speaking on the occasion in presence of Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, the Chief Minister said that nine airports were running in Uttar Pradesh and air connectivity had vastly improved in five years, adding that work was going on to connect with other countries as well. “At present, nine airports are functioning in the state. Four years ago, just four airports in the state were connected to 25 destinations. Now, flights for 75 destinations across the country are available from the state,” the Chief Minister said. He thanked Union Minister of Civil Aviation for the improved air connectivity and said, “It is for the first time that connectivity between two important cities – the land of Baba Gorakhnath with the land of Baba Vishwanath – has been created via air route.” Emphasising the importance of better air connectivity, the Chief Minister said the increase in air connectivity will not only ease vehicular congestion and boost tourism, but will also open up new employment opportunities for the youth in the state. “The rapid expansion in air network is a testament to PM Modi’s commitment. Modiji had said that even the ones who wear Hawaii slippers, will now travel in airplanes,” he said. The state of Uttar Pradesh has immense potential and there are limitless possibilities for the region to turn into a leading place, he added. “According to the vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the development of Uttar Pradesh will play a pivotal role in making India the world’s largest economy. To ensure this, the air connectivity has been improved to a great extent,” he said. On the occasion of launch of new air services, Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia said Uttar Pradesh shows the way to politics of the country. The country is determined to follow UP and its decision to elect a government, which works for the welfare of common man and upliftment of every section of the society. He also congratulated Yogi Adityanath for taking charge as the Chief Minister again and said that under his rule, Uttar Pradesh achieved new heights. Scindia said under the summer schedule, Varanasi will now be connected with 15 cities from 11, while in Gorakhpur, this number will increase from six cities to nine. He further said that there were only four airports in UP earlier, but the figure has increased to 18 now, including five international airports, which would become functional in the coming time. Referring to the Gorakhpur airport, the Union Civil Aviation Minister said there will also be an extension of Gorakhpur airport’s terminal building, to increase the capacity from 100 passengers to 300.