Airport frisking has politicians howling the loudest
It is a tough life guarding India's airports and preventing terrorists from getting in, and India's VIPs don't make it any easier.delhi Updated: May 09, 2012 01:12 IST
It is a tough life guarding India's airports and preventing terrorists from getting in, and India's VIPs don't make it any easier.
Politicians, including MPs, have lodged the maximum number of complaints against the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), which is tasked with frisking passengers before they board an aircraft.
Others who have complained include a high court judge, an IPS officer and an immigration sub-inspector.
The CISF received 18 complaints against its personnel in 2011, MoS home Jitendra Singh told the Lok Sabha on Tuesday.
But inquiries ordered into the complaints showed that in most cases, CISF personnel were not at fault. They were only insisting that the passengers follow the security procedures including requiring two ministers of state to prove their identity to be exempted from the checks.
Lok Sabha MP Datta Meghe, who complained that CISF officers misbehaved with him, was one of them.
According to the CISF's action taken report, the MP was asked to remove his coat and put it in the X-ray machine as per routine procedure. But, senior officers intervened and let him pass.
Another MP, Kamal Kishore, first declined to place his coat for screening but later relented. Same with a Guwahati HC judge who complied with the procedure but complained that he was selectively targeted.
Misbehaviour, however, isn't all that the CISF has been accused of.
Passengers have complained of theft though CCTV footage did not substantiate this.
Ashima Minda was one of them. Minda alleged her jewellery went missing from her bag during the security check at the Dibrugarh airport. The CCTV footage, however, showed the bag was not checked.
But the CISF is not perfect.
Two personnel were suspended at Bhubaneswar airport and inquiries initiated after it was found they misbehaved with a journalist and his son.