Passengers of 84 airports will be free from pat-down body searches and door frame metal detectors from March 2020. The Government has ordered 28 hypersensitive and 56 sensitive airports to install body scanners by March 2020. The remaining airports across the country can install them by March 2021.
Unlike the current door frame metal detectors and handheld detectors, the body scanners are capable of identifying both metallic and non-metallic items concealed in the body. The Government has also issued necessary procedures to follow while using body detectors.
The passengers would have to remove their jackets, thick clothing, shoes, belts as well as all metallic items before entering into the body scanner of an airport.
The scanners are based used on millimetre wave technology comprising non-ionising electromagnetic radiation. The circular implied that the scanners are safe for all people, including pregnant women.
Walk-through metal detectors and handheld metal detectors cannot detect non-metallic weapons and explosives. Body scanners detect both metallic and non-metallic items concealed on the body, states the circular sent by Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) to all airports in April this year.
Answering the concerns about the body scanners capturing the body images, the circular has clarified that the scanners will only create mannequin-like images while screening the passenger. The system will highlight the area that needs further screening using a yellow highlight.
Scanner shall provide an image-free solution using a generic mannequin. Threats shall be graphically presented, the circular stated.