Airports buckle up to strengthen security measures at airport, curbs movement of unauthorized arms, goods, cash

As the country gears up for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) has also buckled up by issuing instructions to strengthen security measures across all airports to curb the movement of unauthorized arms, contraband goods, cash or bullion.

The BCAS circular has asked the Air Traffic Control (ATC) to share records of not just the scheduled commercial flights but also the private aircraft or helicopters to the state CEO and DEO of the district that the airport is located. The details of the travel plan of the flights will also have to be shared at least 30 minutes in advance.

In return, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), Airports Authority or ATC shall inform the police, BCAS and Income Tax Department about the flights in advance. To this effect, a circular was issued by the BCAS stating that since the Model code of conduct has come into effect the extra police units will be deployed in the states.

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“The DGPs (Director Generals of Police) of states shall deploy police units to check these flights during Code of Conduct as per the direction of Election Commission and extant rules and regulations of BCAS in this regards,” the circular states. “This will be over and above what CISF is otherwise doing,” the circular adds.

The statement also said that the airport security agency could conduct surprise inspections of airports to check the compliance of the instructions. The BCAS circular says that apart from measures to strengthen the security at regular commercial airports, special measures have been introduced to check flights from “uncontrolled or remote or unreserved” airstrips, aerodromes helipads, private airstrips and water drones.

The Election Commission had announced the polling dates for the Lok Sabha elections 2019. The voting will be held in seven phases beginning from April 11 to May 19 and the results will be announced on May 23.


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