Over 1,100 CISF personnel have been additionally deployed at 10 select airports in the country as part of bolstering their anti-terror security grid and upgrading of manpower for better passenger services, a senior official said today.
As per records accessed by PTI, 10 civil airports in the cities of Chennai, Patna, Bagdogra, Trivandrum, Vishakhapatnam, Jaipur, Goa, Aurangabad, Hyderabad and Madurai have been provided with a total 0f 1,172 additional CISF personnel over the last few months.
“The fresh manpower, over the existing security deployment, has been made as these airports are witnessing growing passenger traffic and increase in the number of flights.
“The increase in CISF numbers was required to ensure that the anti-terror and counter-sabotage grid is intact and passengers are able to board their flights quickly with the least time taken for frisking and cabin baggage inspection,” a senior official said.
He said larger airports like those in Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru apart from few others have also been accorded the upgrade sometime back, owing to the same requirements.
Manpower upgrade at these 10 airports has been made after a few years and it is expected that it will meet the growing requirements of these facilities for quite some time, he said.
The CISF has also decided to upgrade the level of its commanders, called chief airport security officer (CASO), at the Chennai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad airports from the present rank of senior Commandants to Deputy Inspector General (DIG).
“The rank of the CASO is being enhanced as the number of personnel and operations at these large airports has grown phenomenally. Delhi and Mumbai airports are already headed by a DIG-rank officer of the force,” he said.
The Central Industrial Security Force is tasked to guard 60 civil airports in India, the latest being Shridi where the force was inducted for full security duties last week.
It will soon take over the yet-to-be operational Kannur international airport in Kerala as the Union home ministry had last month cleared deployment of 600 CISF personnel for the task.
This will be followed by the force taking over the airports in Vijaywada (Andhra Pradesh), Jamnagar (Gujarat) and Jabalpur (Madhya Pradesh) in the first go.
The government had recently made it clear that all airports, about 98 in total, in the country will be gradually brought under the security umbrella of the CISF.
The Union home ministry had also recently prepared a comprehensive cabinet note, for the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), so that all airports are brought under the cover of the 1969-raised paramilitary force.
The note is expected to be taken up at the next CCS meeting, the official said.
Of the 98 functional airports in the country at present, 60 are under the armed security cover of the CISF, leaving out 38.