The government of India has identified seven islands in Andaman and Lakshadweep for seaplane operations — Swaraj Dweep, Shaheed Dweep, Hutbay and Long in Andaman and Kavaratti, Agatti and Minicoy in Lakshadweep.

The decision was taken during the fifth meeting of the Island Development Agency (IDA), chaired by Home Minister Rajnath Singh. The meeting was called to review the progress towards “Holistic Development of Islands” programme.

Besides, private sector participation for tourism-based projects in the two archipelagos was also discussed during the meet. Bids have already been invited for the private sector participation plan. These include eco-tourism projects on Smith Island and Long Island and a tent city project on Aves Island.

For Lakshadweep, prospects are being explored for tourism projects in the islands of Kadmat, Minicoy and Suheli Cheriyakara

Other key highlights of the IDA meet include operationalisation of the Diglipur airport for civilian aircraft and the construction of a new airport on Minicoy Island.