India travel: Delays, long queues at airport due to new mandatory screening

100 per cent X-ray check is now mandatory for luggage at Delhi airport for international passengers


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Photo: File
Photo: File

Published: Sat 20 Nov 2021, 6:47 PM

Last updated: Wed 24 Nov 2021, 3:05 PM

The new mandate for international arrivals at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi has left the passengers feeling harassed by standing in long queues, for hours, during the X-Ray checking of baggage at the exit of the terminal gates.

International passengers are witnessing sudden delays in exit from Delhi airport due to the mandatory 100 per cent custom X-ray screening of baggage coming from abroad.

The customs officer of Delhi airport told ANI that a 100 per cent X-ray check is now mandatory for baggage at Delhi airport for international passengers reaching the national capital.

Further, a senior customs official, who does not wish to be named, told ANI, “At present, we have three X-ray machines at Delhi airport. We have to ask our top officials to do 100 per cent scanning of international passengers at arrivals. In this regards customs officers have received the orders,” he said.


Recently, Delhi Airport Customs inaugurated a new X-Ray (scanner) machine to monitor dutiable items and made the screening of baggage of international arrivals compulsory, especially early in the mornings.

Several international travellers, while talking to ANI stated their dissatisfaction with the customs authorities on mandatory X-ray checks of their luggage.

“This is just plain harassment of the passenger and Indian customs going back to the pre liberalization era of the 1980s when international air travellers arriving in India dreaded the third degree they were subjected to by airport customs. It is most surprising that when PM Modi talks about moving ahead, the Finance Ministry which is part of the government is pushing the country back by a few decades,” said a frequent international air traveller who has been undertaking international air travel since 1972.


Another international traveller told ANI that it is the failure of airport customs intelligence-gathering abilities that they had to rely on the solitary x-ray machine to catch smugglers.

ANI also contacted the Public Relation Officer (PRO) of Delhi airport Customs regarding the complaint of passengers on the mandatory custom X-ray check. However, the airport customs refused to comment on the same.

Earlier this month, the check-in area of the passengers at the Mumbai airport witnessed massive chaos during the last boarding time. The failure of crowd management at the airport resulted in passengers at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSIMA) missing flights in Mumbai.

A major complaint has been filed by international travellers to airport customs and on social media that there is an urgent need for hassle-free exit from customs and it is expected that airport customs will come up with a new barrier where passengers do not feel harassed.

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