Helsinki to Mumbai: 8.20 hrs; time taken to exit the airport: 4 hrs | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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Helsinki to Mumbai: 8.20 hrs; time taken to exit the airport: 4 hrs

BySatish Nandgaonkar
Feb 10, 2023 06:16 AM IST

Fliers have repeatedly voiced their angst on social media since February 1, tagging the airport and civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, which seem to have fallen on deaf ears.

Mumbai: The holiday season had put the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport in the news for all the unsavoury reasons, thanks to a jump in passenger footfall. December 2022 has again returned to haunt the country’s second largest airport, with passengers complaining of long queues and more than two to four hours in the wait to clear immigration.

Adnan Chara, who arrived on Feb 7, posted photos of the chaos and tweeted: “Only two hours for immigration at Mumbai airport!!!! Freshly back from few of world’s busiest cities and it’s a pity seeing such gross mismanagement and disrespect to visitors, especially when 7 desks had no officers.” (HT PHOTO)
Adnan Chara, who arrived on Feb 7, posted photos of the chaos and tweeted: “Only two hours for immigration at Mumbai airport!!!! Freshly back from few of world’s busiest cities and it’s a pity seeing such gross mismanagement and disrespect to visitors, especially when 7 desks had no officers.” (HT PHOTO)

Fliers have repeatedly voiced their angst on social media since February 1, tagging the airport and civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, which seem to have fallen on deaf ears.

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On Thursday, Joe Wallen, South Asia Correspondent of London-based ‘The Telegraph’, also took to twitter to state that it took four hours for his family to clear immigration at Mumbai airport as only two officers were manning the counters in the early hours despite a flurry of international flights landing every 10 to 15 minutes.

The arrivals data from flightradar24.com, a live flight monitoring app, showed that between 2.20 am and 7 am on February 9, over 40 international flights landed at the airport every few minutes. The international arrivals also have to undergo biometric scanning before they are allowed to enter the city.

In July 2022, the airport had also integrated the security check for domestic and international passengers, which has further resulted in challenges.

“Fingerprint scanners not working, scuffles breaking out and to top it off, all baggage lost!,” Wallen tweeted, adding, “Such a poor first impression to give of the city -- and, one that could easily be remedied. Simple things, like there was not a single airport employee on the arrivals side to assist or update those waiting. Airport WiFi also not working, according to multiple passengers.”

Another passenger Nandan who arrived at 5.30 am also posted a video of long queue to get into the security check zone. He expressed shock and at the airport’s efficiency dropping significantly.

Adnan Chara, who arrived on Feb 7, posted photos of the chaos and tweeted: “Only two hours for immigration at Mumbai airport!!!! Freshly back from few of world’s busiest cities and it’s a pity seeing such gross mismanagement and disrespect to visitors, especially when 7 desks had no officers.”

Journalist Malini Bhupta, who was at the airport on February 7, said: “It takes 8.20 hrs to come to India from Helsinki but it takes over four hours to exit the Mumbai airport because of a dysfunctional immigration – and we want to promote tourism!”

Mumbai airport’s twitter handle responded to each of the tweets with its standard response – that airport teams were working tirelessly and the customs and immigration were central agencies, and that the airport had no control over the deployment of its personnel.

A senior official from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said the bureau of the security clearances were under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS). The spokesperson for the airport did not respond to calls and messages.

After the December chaos, Scindia had asked the Mumbai and Delhi airports to take certain measures and provide hourly updates on twitter of the time taken at immigration and security checks so that passengers reaching the airport are forewarned.

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