ABSENCE OF high-tech cameras and upgradation of certain facilities is preventing the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) from starting a trial to end stamping of hand baggage tags at the Chandigarh International Airport, sources at Chandigarh International Airport Limited (CHIAL) have told Chandigarh Newsline. CISF Director General O P Singh earlier this month had announced that 10 more airports in the country would soon do away with the practice of stamping the hand baggage tags. The list included Chandigarh International Airport as well.
CHAIL sources, however, said on Tuesday that it was not possible to start the trial at the Chandigarh airport immediately due to the absence of certain parameters required to do away with the stamping. CISF is currently handling the security at the Chandigarh International Airport and airports across the country. “CISF has some set parameters for this process. In Chandigarh, we are not able to do it because the airport does not meet the set criteria currently. The security gadgets need to be upgraded at the airport,” said a senior official at CHAIL.
He said the upgradation would include replacement of several existing cameras at the airport. “CHAIL has to replace some of the infrastructure like cameras and add more cameras at certain locations,” the official said.
When contacted, CHAIL Chief Executive Officer Sunil Dutt told Chandigarh Newsline that the facility would be started at the Chandigarh International Airport by February next year. “We need to replace some cameras and augment more cameras at the airport. Several other things are required before this airport can start this facility,” he said, adding that the trial run is likely to be started by December 31.
Over a dozen airports across the country are currently stamp-free after the CISF initiated this facility earlier this year. Doing away with the baggage stamping is aimed to provide hassle-free security environment to them, officials said. The airline operators at the Chandigarh airport maintain that they haven’t received any communication from CISF regarding making the airport stamp-free of hand baggage tags. “We are providing hand baggage tags to the passengers normally,” said an airline official.