High alert at airports as home ministry works on sealing Indo-Pak border

Rajesh Ahuja, New Delh: The government has put airports in four states that border Pakistan — and in the

national capital — on high alert, keeping in mind the security environment over the past few days.
Around two dozen airports in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Rajasthan and Gujarat besides Delhi will hold more random and detailed checks of passengers and their baggage. Also, parking and loading areas are being specifically monitored.
“There is no specific threat. But as a precaution, we have put the airports in all the bordering states and in Delhi on high alert,” said OP Singh, chief of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) that guards airports across the country. Recently, he reviewed the security preparedness at all airports under CISF protection.
The alert has been sounded at a time when Union home minister Rajnath Singh is in Jaisalmer of Rajasthan on Friday to chair a meet of chief ministers and home ministers of the four border states.
The meeting will deliberate on measures to manage the Indo-Pak border where there is a spurt in tension ever since the September 18 Uri attack in Kashmir and last week’s surgical strikes across the LoC.
After the surgical strikes on terrorist launchpads in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir on the night of September 29, the government had sounded high alert all across the country. The states bordering Pakistan were asked in particular not to lower their guard amid apprehensions of retaliatory strike from across the border.
The security of airports across the country is generally strengthened during the festive season. Additional resources are usually deployed to manage the extra load of passengers, but this time security personnel in the border states’ airports have been asked to remain particularly vigilant owing to the prevailing security environment.
The Bureau of Civil Aviation Security has asked police chiefs of all the four states besides the CISF and other central forces involved in airport security to be “extra careful”.
Intelligence agencies have already warned the government that Pakistan may try to push more terrorists following the surgical strikes. According to an intelligence assessment, Pakistan spy agency ISI has gathered more than 100 terrorists to be pushed into the Valley.