More than 60 airports operational in tier-2 and -3 cities under the Centre’s regional connectivity scheme UDAN will soon be brought under a comprehensive anti-terror security cover of armed CISF personnel with the deployment of around 1,650 troops, officials said.
The proposal is awaiting final policy sanction from the home ministry. The bureau of civil aviation security (BCAS), in consultation with the ministry of civil aviation and the CISF, finalised the proposal for the “very important security measure” required for the safety of passengers taking flights from small airports across India.
Some airports such as Shimla which are under the regional connectivity scheme, are being guarded by the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) while the rest are secured by various state police forces or their special armed units and there is no uniform policy.
The regional connectivity scheme was launched under the name of UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik) in 2016 by the Union government to push regional air connectivity and make air travel affordable to the masses in tier-2 and tier-3 cities and towns. The civil aviation ministry is the regulating agency while the Airports Authority of India (AAI) is responsible for implementing the ambitious scheme.
According to the blueprint accessed by PTI, 57 security personnel will be deployed at each of the airports operational under the UDAN scheme, with 27 armed personnel drawn from the CISF and the rest sourced from certified private security agencies.
The CISF is the national civil aviation security force and it guards 66 major domestic and international airports in the country. (Source: The Mint)