Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla on Monday reviewed the steps taken to revamp infrastructure at Delhi’s IGI airport that include ramping up capacities, close monitoring and revised scheduling of air slots and de-cluttering of immigration counters.
Top officials of the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), and Airports Authority of India (AAI), Bureau of Immigration, Delhi Police, DIAL-GMR and security agencies attended the meeting.
The meeting was informed that a steady ramping up of capacities had taken place since the last review meeting held on December 15, 2022 and a number of important steps have been taken, an official statement said.
It was also informed that close monitoring and revised scheduling of air slots reduced incidents of bunching of flights and additional counters have been made functional along with posting of adequate manpower to facilitate quicker immigration.
Baggage scanners have been increased by doubling up the capacity in domestic bay, immigration counter area has been de-cluttered and the Delhi Police has increased deployment for traffic lane management, the statement said.
It was also informed that on the basis of a stakeholder committee evaluation, the DIAL-GMR has revised a modern layout plan for the immigration bay.
This is likely to be completed in three months without causing any disruptions in the present immigration clearance time.
The proposal includes setting up of documentation and biometrics booths in walkways to avoid cluttering in the immigration bay.
The home secretary assured to coordinate and requested the stakeholders to maintain the pace in streamlining the departure and arrivals in Delhi airports.
The meeting came in the wake of recent incidents aboard aircraft involving unruly passengers.
An inebriated man allegedly urinated on a female co-passenger, a senior citizen in her seventies, in the business class of Air India’s New York-New Delhi flight on November 26 last year.
The accused, Shankar Mishra, was arrested by the Delhi Police from Bengaluru last week.
Ten days after the November 26 incident, another episode of a drunk male passenger allegedly urinating on a female passenger’s blanket was reported on the Paris-Delhi sector, but there was no penal action after he gave a “written apology”.
This incident happened on December 6 on Air India flight 142 and the pilot of the aircraft reported the matter to the Air Traffic Control (ATC) at the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport about it, following which the male passenger was apprehended.
He was, however, later allowed to leave after the two passengers had a “mutual compromise” and the accused tendered a “written apology”.
Two persons were arrested upon arrival in Patna from Delhi Sunday night following a complaint from the airline that they were flying under the influence of alcohol. Both the accused — Nitish and Rahul — were subjected to breath analyzer test after landing.