Friday, February 10, 2023

Aurangabad air cargo service halted as airport fails security test

Aurangabad: The bureau of civil aviation security (BCAS) - the apex body responsible for framing standards and measures regarding the security of civil flights at airports across the country - has stopped air cargo service at the Aurangabad airport after the facility failed to adhere to the prescribed security norms.

The BCAS order has forced business houses to shift their consignments to other nearby airports (at Pune or Mumbai). On average, several metric tonne of cargo is loaded from the Aurangabad airport. This also added to the revenues of the airlines involved.

A senior BCAS official told TOI, "Despite repeated warnings, the security parameters were not being met, compelling us to completely stop air cargo services from Aurangabad airport. The day the airport meets the parameters, we will resume the services."

The matter has been confirmed by Aurangabad airport director D G Salve, who had initially claimed not to be aware of the issue. Later, he said, "The airlines have failed to get clearances necessary to meet the security parameters, due to which the air cargo services have been stopped. You should speak to them (the airlines)."

When contacted, officials heading the airline services operating from Aurangabad pointed fingers at the airport authority of India (AAI) and said that the training for the employees deployed at security scanners is AAI's duty.

A couple of days ago, a body had to be flown out to another destination. However, as air cargo services have been shut, the body had to be taken by road to Pune, from where it was flown out, revealed an airport employee.

10/02/23 Mohammed Akhef/Times of India

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