Monday, May 08, 2017

‘Airport baggage scanners cutting into our luggage’

The baggage scanning machines at the Pune airport are under the scanner, with passengers coming in from international flights claiming that the machines damage their luggage. In the past week, eight such cases have been identified. Now, the passengers are demanding that the Customs officials pay the damages, but the latter are flatly denying such allegations.

Tabassum Ara (48) was one such aggrieved passenger who arrived by Jet Airways from Abu Dhabi on Thursday. “The officials asked me to scan my hand bag. After the scanning, I found that my bag was cut on the side. I have not seen this kind of thing during my extensive travels. The scanner has something inside, which damaged my bag. I just bought the bag before coming to Pune, and it cost around Rs 5,000. But the officials are refusing to pay,” Ara told Pune Mirror.

Rubina Alam, who arrived in Pune with her two kids, also claimed that her baggage was damaged during scanning. Similarly, Mohammad Mohseen Shaikh, another passenger travelling from Dubai with SpiceJet on Sunday morning, claimed that his trolley bag was damaged while being scanned upon arrival. “When I picked up my trolley bag from the luggage belt, there was no damage. Naturally, I was surprised when I found that the bag has a cut at the bottom. I asked the officials if there was some sharp blade-like thing inside the scanning machine. But they replied to the negative, asking me to give a written complaint instead,” Shaikh rued.

The Customs officials at the airport, on the other hand, insisted that the scanner machines were of international standards and damage to any luggage during scanning was impossible. In fact, sources from the airport made it sound like the passengers were giving them a hard time. “They start arguing with the officials, asking them to pay the damages. They claim that the scanning machines had damaged their bags, for which the customs officials are liable to pay up,” said one of the airport sources.
08/05/17 Sushant Ranjan/Pune Mirror