Go-ahead for Aerocity hotels if they pass test
The fate of the hotels coming up at Aerocity — a 45-acre hospitality district right next to the Indira Gandhi International Airport — will be decided soon.delhi Updated: Aug 23, 2013 01:25 IST
The fate of the hotels coming up at Aerocity — a 45-acre hospitality district right next to the Indira Gandhi International Airport — will be decided soon.
Security agencies in charge of the area have taken samples of bulletproof glass used for the doors and windows of the hotels facing the airport runway and sent them to a lab for testing. A team of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) will check the bullet resistance level of the glass at the Terminal Ballistics Research Laboratory (TBRL) in Chandigarh.
In July 2011, the Delhi Police had raised objections to the construction of hotels near Terminal 3 of the airport, saying they were too close to the runway— one of the most guarded areas of the city. The police had conducted a security audit of the area and found that there was just a road between the runway and the hotel rooms, raising serious security concerns.
Bullet-proofing the doors and windows of hotel rooms was suggested as a solution. On Thursday, officials took samples of the glass used for bullet-proofing for testing.
According to officials, bullets will be fired into these glass sheets from different types of guns to check their quality. If the glass they have used is good enough to stop a bullet fired from a sophisticated weapon from both long and short range, the hotels will be given approval to start commercial operations.
“We will fire from INSAS rifle, AK-47 and Glock pistol from various distances. If even a single bullet pierces the glass, the hotels will be asked to make it stronger,” said a senior official of Bureau for Civil Aviation Security (BCAS). Hotels that are ready for nearly a year are waiting for a nod from the security agencies so that they can start bookings. According to sources, three hotels have submitted detailed plans and have also installed bulletproof glass on rooms facing the runway.
The committee has taken samples from an international hotel which, according to them, has the best security system.
“The hotel chain had faced a terrorist attack in Pakistan and after that it strengthened security at its hotels across the world. They have a seven layer security system and if the sample submitted by them gets approval, we will ask others to follow the same specification,” the official added.
It is mandatory for the hotels to have biometric system for strict access control to the buildings close to the runway. The committee with members from Delhi Police, Airports Authority of India (AAI), Ministry of Civil Aviation (MOCA), (CISF) and Bureau for Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) will decide whether the security is good enough to allow the hotels to operate.