From now on, passengers will be able to carry only one handbag with them while entering airports. The Civil Aviation Security Bureau has issued this order in a new circular. It states that the ‘One Hand Bag Rule’ has to be strictly implemented at airports. According to the circular, no passengers will be allowed to carry more than one bag with them.
As per the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) AVSEC Circular, “No passenger should be permitted to carry more than one hand bag other than those items already listed in the circular including lady’s bag. However, it has been seen that passenger on an average carries 02-03 Nos of hand bags to the screening point. This has led to increased clearance time as well as delays, congestion in PESC point and inconvenience to passengers. It is therefore felt that enforcement of the aforesaid Circulars must be ensured by all stakeholders / airlines.”
The order further stated that airport Operators may be instructed to place hoarding/banner/board/standees displaying the contents of the ‘One hand bag Rule’ near the check-in counters, vantage locations before SHA at the airports so that passengers get sensitized and if required, have an option to switch their extra hand bags to registered baggage.
In addition to a hand bag, the existing rules allow a passenger to carry a laptop bag, a women’s hand bag and a blanket, items purchased from duty-free shops, an umbrella and a limited amount of reading material. A private airline executive said, “How is it possible to enforce this rule when the government’s own rules allow many other things? The regulator should be clear in its instructions and should not create confusion for the frontline workers of airlines. People aware of the developments said that some MPs had complained to Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia about overcrowding during the security check. After this, the regulator was asked to take such a step to decongest the crowd.