The Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport here was placed on high alert on Tuesday after the Intelligence Bureau (IB) sent out an all-India alert that a small aircraft may be used to carry out a terror attack.
Security was beefed up and checks intensified as the alert came on the third anniversary of the Delhi blasts and just two days after the tenth anniversary of 9/11.
Apart from officials of the Central Industrial Security Force that is in charge of airport security, officials of the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security and the Mumbai police were posted at the airport.
While the number of security personnel at the watch booths located 100 metres away from the terminals was increased in order to check every car coming in, the number of personnel at the entrance gates was more than doubled. Inside, random frisking was done in addition to the regular checks, airport officials said.
State home minister RR Patil said the alert was general in nature. "We wanted to be careful," he added. A state home department official, however, confirmed the alert warned of an attack using small aircraft.
“In July, the IB learnt that terror suspects had acquired the schedule of two major private airline companies, and it was suspected that terrorists wanted to hijack a flight belonging to these companies,” said a senior IB official on condition of anonymity. Tuesday’s alert was sent out after the IB, working on that information, suspected a small aircraft may be used to attack one of our cities.