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Covert cameras in passenger planes?

The covert cameras could be used to videograph any incident on board.

New Delhi: To boost airline security in the country, passenger aircraft may soon be fitted with covert cameras to capture every incident on board.

This is among a series of measures which the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) has suggested to the Civil Aviation Ministry, sources said, adding that the Ministry is likely to issue an advisory to all airlines to take necessary measures.

The covert cameras could be used to videograph any incident on board, including a hijack or the doings of a disruptive passenger.

The recommendation came after an anti-hijack drill at Delhi`s IGI Airport last month.

The BCAS, the top body for aviation security in India, also recommended that the `incident holding area`, where a plane is taken to park after a security-related emergency, should be moved to an isolated part of the Delhi airport, the sources said.

Currently, the location of this area is close to the VIP aircraft hangar in the IAF`s Technical Area.

As part of the recommendations, the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) has started randomly checking vehicles entering the Delhi Airport.

The move came in response to a recent review of airport security by the Home Ministry, which also examined the feasibility of introducing remote baggage screening or screening luggage ahead of entering the terminal area.

This process had earlier been rejected as it could cause traffic congestion and additional delays for passengers coming in to catch a flight.

Security and anti-hijack drills are in the process of being carried out at all major airports including the ones in Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Bengaluru and Hyderabad.

The Bureau has also asked airport operators to immediately enhance security by installing CCTVs and take other measures to secure the entire airport area, right from the entry point.

The drills were carried out and directives issued following growing threat perceptions, weeks after the December terror attack at Moscow`s Domodedovo airport.

The latest aviation security order instructs airport authorities to keep a tab on all movements, including the parking lots.

Restrictions on visitors inside terminals or carrying of baggage in the arrival and departure areas by non-passengers have been put in place, the sources said.

The number of CISF personnel at entry and exit points as well as parking lots was being enhanced, besides installation of CCTV cameras in parking areas, they said.

Non-metallic explosive devices were now the foremost threat to passenger airlines and it was imperative that detection capabilities are enhanced, they said.


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