The government on Saturday issued an ‘alert’ asking all civil aviation installations - airports, airstrips, airfields, air force stations, helipads flying schools, aviation training institutes, etc. – in the country to enhance the existing security measures. The alert has been issued as the government has received intelligence inputs in the aftermath of the Pulwama attack and subsequent developments.
"In view of the intelligence input in the aftermath of the Pulwama attack and subsequent developments, it is imperative to enhance the existing security measures being taken at all the civil aviation installations like airports, airstrips, airfields, air force stations, helipads, flying schools, aviation training institutes etc. so that no untoward incident takes place," the alert notification read.
The alert, issued by Director General of Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), asks all airlines and airports to take 20 specific enhanced security measures which will be "in operation till further orders".
The security measures include "strict access control to regulate entry into the terminal building, on ground monitoring and enhanced screening of passengers and staff". According to the alert notification, no vehicle should be parked in front of the terminal building and there should be ‘intensive checking of vehicles entering car parking area’.
The BCAS has suggested enhanced screening of passengers, staff, and hand baggages and "strengthening of anti-terrorism/anti-sabotage measures and placement of quick response teams" at all airports.
According to the alert notification, "QRT and perimeter patrolling" has to be strengthened too. QRTs are part of the CISF only, which is in-charge of security at various airports across the country. "Intensive checking of vehicles/persons at the approach to airport terminals/installations" has also been called for.
Authorities have been also been asked to "enhance surveillance in and around the aviation installations" and specific monitoring of "flights/helicopters/UAV/ UAS/drones/gliders/hot air balloons from airports/helipads/airfield around Delhi National Capital region". There would be "no issuance of visitor entry passes till further notice", it said and directed strict monitoring of non-scheduled flight operations including air ambulance.
Meanwhile, the Indian Army has said that its weapons systems were on high alert and its mechanized forces were on standby in the wake of the Pakistan Air Force's (PAF) attempts to hit Indian military installations a day earlier. Major General S.S. Mahal told the media that on Wednesday PAF jets tried to target a Brigade Headquarters, a Battalion Headquarters and logistics installations in Jammu and Kashmir.