Airport security upgrade: Four major airports in India to deploy full-body scanners
The tender also included 600 new hand baggage scanners for airports under the Airports Authority of India (AAI), with a total investment estimated at over Rs 1,000 crore. However, the tender was later withdrawn as it required clearance from the PIB.
In a significant development aimed at enhancing security and expediting passenger processing at India's highly sensitive airports, the Airport Authority of India (AAI) has received approval from the Public Investment Board (PIB) for the installation of full-body scanners.
These advanced scanners are expected to reduce passenger frisking time by half, making security checks more efficient.
The deployment of these full-body scanners is planned at four airports across the country, including Kolkata, Chennai, Pune, and Goa. Initially, in July, the government had issued a tender for the procurement of 131 full-body scanners, which could reduce passenger frisking time from 30 seconds to just 15 seconds.
Additionally, the tender also included 600 new hand baggage scanners for airports under the Airports Authority of India (AAI), with a total investment estimated at over Rs 1,000 crore. However, the tender was later withdrawn as it required clearance from the PIB.
All investment proposals with an estimated cost exceeding ₹500 crore fall under the purview of the PIB. As a result, the initial plan to install full-body scanners and hand baggage scanners at 43 airports was revised. Instead, the PIB has approved the installation of full-body scanners at the four airports with the highest passenger footfall, all of which are owned and managed by the AAI.
The decision was made during a recent meeting involving key stakeholders responsible for airport safety and security, including senior officials from the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Bureau of Civil Aviation, Ministry of Home Affairs, and others. The meeting focused on various aspects, including procurement, installation, training of security personnel, and operational procedures.
Full-body scanners utilize millimeter-wave technology to detect objects that may be concealed on a person's body. These scanners operate based on body contours, enhancing security checks. The four selected airports—Kolkata, Chennai, Goa, and Pune—are categorized as hypersensitive by the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS).
Following the successful implementation of full-body scanners at these four airports, the plan is to expand their deployment to other airports in the near future. The AAI is responsible for managing 137 airports in India, comprising 24 international airports, 10 customs airports, and 103 domestic airports.