How the intruder breached the security
A man in an intoxicated state managed to scale the perimeter wall of the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport in Delhi and entered the runway on Saturday night, causing a major security breach. The incident occurred around 11:30 pm when the airport was on high alert due to the ongoing Republic Day celebrations.
The intruder was first spotted by the pilot of an Air India flight who informed the Air Traffic Control (ATC) about the presence of a man on the runway. The ATC immediately alerted the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), which is responsible for securing the airport.
The CISF personnel chased the man and apprehended him within minutes. He was identified as a resident of Haryana and was found to be drunk. He was handed over to the Delhi Police for further investigation.
The action taken by the CISF
The CISF launched an inquiry into the serious security breach at the airport, which is classified as a “hypersensitive” civil aviation facility. The paramilitary force suspended a head constable who was on duty that night on charges of dereliction of duty.
The CISF also reviewed the security arrangements at the airport and took measures to prevent any such incidents in the future. The force has deployed additional personnel and equipment to monitor the perimeter wall and the runway.
The CISF provides a counter-terrorist security cover to the IGI Airport and is responsible for securing its perimeter wall too.
The impact of the incident on the airport operations
The incident did not affect the airport operations as the intruder was caught before he could cause any damage or disruption. The airport authorities said that no flights were delayed or cancelled due to the security breach.
However, the incident raised concerns over the safety and security of the airport, especially during the high-alert period of the Republic Day celebrations. The airport is one of the busiest in the country and handles over 70 million passengers annually.
The incident also exposed the vulnerability of the airport’s perimeter wall, which is supposed to be electrified and guarded by CCTV cameras and sensors. The intruder apparently managed to evade all these security measures and reached the runway.
The incident also came as a reminder of the 2016 Pathankot airbase attack, in which terrorists infiltrated the airbase by cutting the perimeter fence and killed seven security personnel.