Tuesday, October 09, 2018

CISF flags airport security chinks

New Delhi: Many of the country’s airports suffer from “lacunae” in their security, the head of the agency that protects most Indian airports told The Telegraph on Monday.

“There are several lacunae in the existing security mechanism in several airports which need to be addressed,” Rajesh Ranjan, director-general of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), said ahead of a two-day international seminar on aviation security that his force is organising here from Tuesday.

“There are new challenges and we are working to make it (airport security) fool-proof,” he added, declining to specify either the weaknesses or the airports where they prevail.

The CISF is in charge of security at 60 of the 100 airports in the country. The local police or other central paramilitary forces handle security at the remaining 40, which include the Srinagar, Jammu, Gorakhpur, Mysore, Jabalpur, Ludhiana, Jamshedpur, Cooch Behar and Durgapur airports. Nineteen of these 40 are classified as “hyper-sensitive”.

Sources said that national security adviser Ajit Doval, who had earlier ordered a security audit of all airports, had suggested that all the 100 airports be handed over to the CISF.

They added that the security agencies had in a report to the home ministry highlighted that the smaller airports were potential sitting ducks for terrorists. One of the smaller airports was recently inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Sikkim.
09/10/18 Imran Ahmed Siddiqui/Telegraph