Sunday, September 17, 2017

Airports go hi-tech, beef up security

New Delhi: In a major security overhaul of the country’s airports, the Ministry of Civil Aviation will prioritise installation of multi-layered technology system Perimeter Intrusion Detection System (PIDS) in them. The move comes in the wake of growing air traffic and increased attempts of intrusion at airports.
The ministry will conduct fortnightly high-level meetings on how to install PIDS. Top officials from Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), Airports Authority of India, Bureau of Civil Aviation Security and the ministry will attend these meetings.

Sources said the ministry wants to install PIDS in a phased manner, starting from 16 super-sensitive airports. Currently, the technology— with physical and covert detection systems, including taut wire, underground cable, CCTV cameras and radars—is available at only Delhi, Mumbai and Hyderabad airports. A patrolling track along the perimeter wall raises an alarm whenever someone tries touches the boundary wall. The Israeli system also has a special night vision to detect movement. PIDS is heavily guarded by the CISF, who are also deployed at watchtowers along the periphery. While CISF ensures security of airports and operates PIDS, responsibility for maintenance of the security system is with the airport operators.

PIDS was installed at the three airports in pursuance of guidelines issued in 2007 by BCAS, which made it mandatory for all airports in the country to have the security system. There are 76 functioning airports in the country, whose number is likely to go up once the government’s regional connectivity scheme (RCS) picks up pace. Earlier, CISF had raised concerns about PIDS’ false alarms “draining its resources”, especially at Delhi’s IGI Airport.
17/09/17 Sana Shakil/New Indian Express