New Delhi: To make security checks quicker and error-free at India's busiest airports, the Airport Authority of India (AAI) is all set to deploy body scanners that will cut down the passenger frisking time by half. A senior AAI official said, "Presently, it takes around 30 seconds on average to frisk a passenger manually but with the deployment of these millimeter-wave technology-based full-body scanners, the same can be done in 15 seconds."
He further said that the use of these body scanners has been approved after a trial conducted at the busiest airports like Delhi and Bengaluru.
The observation of trials was passed to the Bureau of Civil Aviation and Security (BCAS) and after detailed meetings, approval and specification have been made.
"During trials of full body scanners, there were glitches of false alarm and were unable to detect certain objects. It has been overcome and new trials were successful as per the requirement of security agencies functioning at airports", the offical added.
Unlike the metal detector, the millimeter-wave based full body scanner will help detect any liquid or plastic hidden under the clothes of the passenger. It works on the principle of body contours and is designed to detect objects that could be concealed in the body," the official said, explaining the functioning.
He added that AAI will be installing 131 full-body scanners at various airports operated by AAI.
"The number of full body scanners at each airport will depend upon the passenger load. The approved body scanners are accurate, comply with privacy concerns and pose no risk to health. It will ensure faster and accurate security clearance, resulting in smooth security checks to passengers," said the official.
Further, the official said that the existing security system that has door frame-type metal detectors (DFMDs) and metal detectors to frisk passengers will be replaced with full-body scanners in a phase-wise manner. The official added that the induction of full body scanners, however, will not affect the deployment of security personnel at the airport as it will remain the same.
On being asked about the massive procurement of security systems at airports, the official said that as per various reports, India is the world's third largest and fastest growing aviation market in the world, and they need world-class security systems for the convenience of passengers.
The cost of each full-body scanner is around Rs 4 crore and a total of 131 units have to be purchased. They will soon float tender for it. There are certain European companies that have approached AAI, the official added.
The official added that they will also be procuring 600 new Dual view X-ray hand-baggage scanners.