After the Pulwama terror attack, Air India got a threat of abduction of the aircraft. These threats were received on Saturday by Air India’s Mumbai-based control center on the phone. After this, the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) has directed the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and all the airlines to increase security arrangements within the airports and aircrafts.
According to the advisory issued on February 23 by BCAS, in Mumbai, a message received from Air India’s Operation Control Center (AOCC) through the telephone. In this message, a threat was issued that on 23 February, an aircraft will be abducted and be taken to Pakistan.
Further, the BCAS stated that “In view of this information, the Airports Security Unit (APSU) and the Aviation Security Group (ASG) and all the aircraft operators (airlines) will implement eight measures as forthwith with immediate effect. APSUs and ASGs are actually part of CISF. Similarly, Indian Airlines is part of Air India.
These 8 measures are as follows:
- Strict monitoring and investigation of those who entered the airport terminal building, airside, all operation area and other aviation facilities.
- Intensive search and investigation of all vehicles entering the car parking area, so that a potential bomb attack can be stopped before it can occur.
- More intensive investigations and search of travellers, employees and visitors It includes a thorough investigation and search of any person at the entrance.
- Check-up and monitoring of materials, hand baggage, cargo, cargo terminal, food, post etc.
- In addition to CCTV cameras in and around the Terminal Building, the addition of manual monitoring levels.
- The Quick Action Team and Petroling teams around the airport premises will do petrol with more vigilance.
- Strict investigation with more armed forces on the entry and exit gates used for the transportation of transportable goods (cargo) and vehicles.
- Other additional steps to protect on the basis of local information.
It is noteworthy that on December 24, 1999, terrorists kidnapped the Air India flight (Flight-884) coming to Delhi from Kathmandu to Delhi, Lahore and Dubai, to release three terrorists including Jaish-e-Mohammad’s gangster Masood Azhar.
Taking lessons from the scandal, the government had passed the anti-hijacking (anti-hijacking) bill in 2014 in order to effectively deal with such situations and not to succumb to terrorists in the event of an abduction of the aircraft. This law provides for the life abduction of aircraft hijackers from life imprisonment to death.