Flights of Air India and other Indian carriers operating in South Asia have been put on high security alert following intelligence inputs that Pakistan-based LeT and Al-Qaeda-linked terrorists were plotting to hijack an Indian plane in the region.
Mandatory secondary ladder point checks on all aircraft operating in the south asian region and sky marshals on flights were ordered by authorities, as security was further beefed up at airports across the country after Government issued a hijack alert for Indian planes in SAARC countries.
"The alerts have been issued by us and it is based on some intelligence inputs that we have received. We suspect that there can be an attempt to target one of our airlines especially those which fly abroad. We have alerted our agencies to be careful on anti-hijacking measures," U K Bansal, Special Secretary (Internal Security), said today.
He said the Civil Aviation Ministry and the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) have been alerted to tighten security in all airports in the country.
A directive has been issued to all Indian missions abroad to sensitise the staff of the airlines, he said.
"These are anti-India terrorist outfits whose objectives are to carry out attacks in India or harm Indian interests," he said.
According to intelligence inputs, terrorist groups owing allegiance with Al-Qaeda, Lashker-e-Taiba(LeT) and Jamat-ud-Dawah(JuD) were planning to hijack an Air India plane especially operating to or from SAARC countries -- Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Maldives, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India as well.
Air India and private carriers Jet Airways and Kingfisher said necesssary security drill put in place and nothing was being taken to chance.