Hyderabad: It is relatively easy for anyone to enter an airport with concealed weapons as the passengers are not frisked at the entrance or is the baggage scanned.
The Central Industrial Security Force, which guards the RGI Airport at Shamshabad, only checks the identification and the air ticket of the person entering the terminal. Once inside, the passenger can move freely inside.
The security checks come only later, during check-in. Staff working inside the airport, like Janipally Srinivasa Rao who attacked YSRC chief Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy, are only randomly checked. They can enter the premises with a special pass.
A senior police official said “Checking of luggage and baggage scanning at the RGI airport are performed only during check-in.”
There is also lack of checking at the parking area, passenger holding area before entering the airport. Suspicious activities would be monitored by the armed personnel.
There were instances where passengers were caught with live bullets and weapons in the RGIA only during the baggage scan at the check-in, but not at the entry.
A senior official from the CISF said VIP security was not its mandate. “As designed in the National Civil Aviation Security Programme and as ordered by the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security, the CISF mandate is anti-terror, anti-sabotage and anti-hijacking measures,” he said.
He said the CISF does passenger identification at the departure gates by matching of ticket details with the identity card like Aadhaar and others for passengers.
“The CISF does not check hand baggage or check-in baggage nor frisk every passenger. They do so only on a random basis,” he said.
For employees and staff working in the airport, the Airport Entry Pass is issued based on the antecedent verification by the local police. Such employees are only randomly checked. “The responsibility of the CISF starts at the sterile hold area,” he said.