After cases of intrusion and repeated security threats, the Delhi airport operator is constructing a second wall of defence along the existing boundary wall of Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA).
According to sources, Delhi Police and the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) have been concerned about a possible threat to the airport, especially from National Highway-8 on which side the planes descend.
Sources in Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) said that at least 70% of the work on the second wall is over. Once it is complete, the runway and even the temple inside the airport boundary will not be visible from the road.
“Close to the airport, the plane is at a low height and can be targeted from the road. Also, the runway is easily visible. We had asked the Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) to construct another boundary wall along the existing wall that is 40 kilometres long,” said a Delhi Police official. “The new wall is higher than the existing wall and no one will be able to see the runway from outside after the construction is complete,” he added. A barbwire will also be installed on it once the entire work is completed.
There will be a distance of 10 meter between the two walls to be used as a patrolling track by the police. This will also help strengthen the Perimeter Intrusion Detection System (PIDS) as the security agencies were not happy with the current arrangement. PIDS was supposed to be installed before the Commonwealth Games in 2010 but got delayed for several reasons.
The four-layered PIDS – with physical and covert detection systems including taut wire, buried cable, CCTV cameras and radars – was finally installed in 2013 around the existing perimeter wall of the airport. However, it has not been used till now.
“We haven’t taken over the PIDS yet as it still gives a false alarm sometimes. There is a need to protect the boundary wall and develop a system, which is foolproof,” said a CISF official.
The airport operator had claimed that the system would be effective in any kind of weather and help in enhancing the efficiency of the security personnel in responding to security breaches. The outer periphery of the airport (almost 35 km) is also manned by watchtowers and patrolling teams of CISF.