Domestic passengers flying from Coimbatore, Calcutta, Indore and Vadodara will not be required to tag their hand baggage anymore. The country’s top aviation security body allowed the airports in these cities also to discontinue the outdated security procedure which has already been scrapped in 13 other airports. The Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) plans to scrap the practice across airports in a phased manner. All 59 airports where CISF is in-charge of security are likely to be covered by the end of the year.
In two separate rounds in April and June, the security agencies had discontinued this procedure in 13 airports. “After successful trial run and positive feedback received from the concerned quarters, it has been decided to dispense with the present system of stamping of hand baggage tags at pre-embarkation security check (PESC) points at four additional airports namely Coimbatore, Calcutta, Indore and Vadodara with immediate effect,” Kumar Rajesh Chandra, DG BCAS said in an order issued on September 8.
The first phase of dispensing with the tags covered seven major airports at Delhi, Mumbai, Cochin, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Ahmedabad. The next round included six more airports — Jaipur, Guwahati, Lucknow, Trivandrum, Patna and Chennai. A tag on a hand bag with the contact details of a passenger would help security personnel in tracking the owner in case an x-ray examination detected something suspicious.
BCAS officials say that this is being replaced by increased surveillance at airports through cctv cameras and better deployment of personnel engaged in stamping of these tags. It is in line with this that the latest order adds, “the airport operator shall ensure that the requisite monitoring system and supporting infrastructure are maintained all through at PESC points.”
The new protocols are only meant for domestic passengers and those travelling to international destinations will have to get their hand baggage tags stamped as usual.