Delhi’s IGI airport to have bomb resistant, LMG-mounted bullet proof vehicles to counter attacks

The bullet proof vehicles, meant for airport security, will be handed over to the CISF’s Quick Reaction Teams (QRTs), trained to be the first responders in a crisis situation.

delhi Updated: Aug 03, 2018 14:59 IST
Anvit Srivastava
Anvit Srivastava
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Delhi,IGI airport,CISF
The procurement of bulletproof vehicles for the IGI airport is at an advanced stage and each unit will n cost between Rs 25 lakh and Rs 40 lakh.(Arvind Yadav/ HT File Photo )

To counter vehicular and lone-wolf attackers inside and near the periphery of the Delhi airport, authorities are procuring a fleet of bullet proof vehicles for airport security. They will be handed over to the CISF’s Quick Reaction Teams (QRTs), trained to be the first responders in a crisis situation. The Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL), operator of the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA), bought the vehicles after the Bureau of Civil Aviation recently approved its specifications, officials said.

At present, the CISF has no bullet proof vehicle in its airport security unit. According to senior officers in the force not authorised to speak to the media, the procurement of these vehicles is in an advanced stage. Each unit will cost between Rs 25 to 40 lakh and will have a Light Machine Gun mounted on it. They will also be bomb resistant.

“The Delhi airport falls under the category of hypersensitive airports of the country. In the event of a vehicular terrorist or lone-wolf attack, these multi-utility-vehicles will be the only resort. They will enable our commandos to approach the attacker without falling under direct line of risk. We have asked for seven such vehicles. The DIAL is procuring the vehicles for the CISF,” said a senior CISF officer.

The measure was taken after a series of alerts from intelligence agencies about the possibility of such an attack by terror outfits.

In June 2007, the Glasgow airport in Scotland witnessed an attack of similar nature wherein a vehicle loaded with propane cans rammed into the glass doors of the airport terminal and was set ablaze.

The officer said that such an attack was less likely to occur inside the IGIA’s terminal. “Be it a lone wolf attacker or a vehicular attack, it cannot take place inside the terminal. We have adequate checks at the terminal and it is not possible for anyone to sneak in with a weapon. For vehicles, adequate measures are already in place so that they do not get dangerously close to the terminal building,” he said.

“These bullet proof vehicles will patrol the periphery of the airport and will keep a tight vigil around the terminal areas,” the officer said, adding that they hope the vehicles arrive before this Independence Day.

DIAL, however, did not respond to e-mails.

First Published: Aug 03, 2018 14:59 IST