Security agencies clear the decks for Pune airport expansion

The expansion of the Pune airport will entail a complete overhaul of the existing security measures, officers of the city police as well as the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) have said. Manjit Singh, a Deputy Commandant rank CISF officer, who is also the official spokesperson, said: “With the expansion plan in the offing for Pune airport, the security cover which the CISF provides at the airport will have to be beefed up and re-structured. It is the job of the CISF to guard the airport against any kind of threat perception and the expansion could see many changes, including additional men and a new security and safety plan.”

The CISF did not disclose the total number of men deployed at the airport and their formation due to security reasons. However, sources said that the men at the airport are on red alert most of the days, especially during events like festivals, Independence and the Republic Day. Apart from guarding the airport terminal, sources said the CISF men also keep a watch on city areas around the airport in coordination with the local police. The paramilitary personnel in plainclothes also keep a watch on the movement of people, vehicles and also establishments (buildings) near the airport.

“The Airports Authority of India (AAI) and the CISF will soon hold a meeting and draw a detailed security plan in view of the airport expansion plans,” airport sources said. Sanjay Naik-Patil, the in-charge of the Vimantal Police Chowky, said that they too were keeping a close watch on the expansion project and were in talks with the CISF as well as the AAI.