CISF proposes to do away with boarding pass

New Delhi: After doing away with hand baggage tags at over a dozen airports, aviation security agencies are now planning to dump the boarding pass collection system and begin a regime of ‘express check-in’ aided by biometrics for smooth air travel.

The chief of the country’s airport security force–the CISF-said in an interview that they have begun “exploring” the technology that is required to usher in the boarding card-less system of air travel at the 59 airports that it guards at present and at the rest of such civil facilities that are going to come under its umbrella as part of a “unified command” in the future.

“We are working on two projects. The first is how to introduce integrated security solutions at airports. You need to connect all dots that exist within the security establishment. You have so many strategies to do it…you have the biometrics, video analytics and a very robust access control system.

“We will try to interconnect all these things in a very integrated fashion,” CISF Director General O P Singh said.

“We may do away with boarding cards too. But, that depends on how strong I become (with regard to technology-based security systems). The Hyderabad airport is the only airport in the country that is totally biometric. We are trying to explore this system for all airports,” he said.

The DG said the launch of the new system at the Hyderabad airport is for “every” stakeholder in the airport security to see and that it was a “shining example” when it comes to bringing in smart systems and take new steps to ensure smooth and hassle-free movement of passengers at airports.

As part of the system unveiled at the Hyderabad airport recently, domestic passengers after printing a boarding pass from self-service kiosks at departures forecourt area outside the terminal building, can straight head to express security check lane without getting into the check-in area and then go towards the boarding area.

The CISF’s plans come at a time when there have been talks of using identities like Aadhaar and others for starting biometric entry system of passengers at airports. It plans to not only introduce a system like the Hyderabad airport but also work towards doing away with the boarding pass with the help of biometrics.

“I can assure the airport operators and others in the aviation domain that the CISF is all prepared and ready to facilitate these new systems,” Singh said while talking about the future course of action vis-a-vis smart air travel.

The DG of the 1.80-lakh personnel strong paramilitary force said that there could be many ways to make air travel more secure and easy for passengers, at the same time.

“There could be so many things. What does a passenger want? They want a very smooth journey and a very less waiting time. We have noted that our time for frisking (passengers) has lessened and this is certainly below the global level.We have our own strategies to deal with passengers during peak time.

“Our frisking time is certainly better than global standards of the world,” he said adding that this time is not more than 12 minutes.

The Central Industrial Security Force, along with other agencies like the BCAS and Ministry of Civil Aviation, has recently started a passenger-friendly system of doing away with tagging and stamping of hand baggage tags for both domestic and international air travellers at 17 airports in the country. This new system is expected to be launched at ten more airports by the end of this month or early October. with PTI inputs

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