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HomeBreaking NewsChaos at Delhi airport’s T3, long queues at ticket counters, immigration, security...

Chaos at Delhi airport’s T3, long queues at ticket counters, immigration, security check

Long lines at immigration and security, disorganized checks, chaos in the lounge – Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport Terminal 3 has become a nightmare for passengers, despite authorities cutting back flights.

Passengers have been complaining for weeks that departure from T3 is a laborious process. Footage from the airport shared on social media shows men and women queuing for security, with some saying they had to wait two to three hours in the clearance area.

Sudiep Shrivastava (53), a lawyer, said: “I often have to fly because of my job, but it has become a nightmare. Right from the entrance… it takes 20-30 minutes to enter T3. There are 5-6 rows outside every day. Then we have to wait at the baggage drop. The security check area is the worst. You have to stand for hours and there is so much chaos… It’s physically and mentally exhausting… You have to stand behind 100-200 people. Who would like that?”

Personal stylist and consultant Sanjukta Pandey told The Indian Express: “For me, there was no rush at the entrance, but the baggage drop was slow. I had a web check-in, but the security check was a disaster. There was a long line for scanning at the security checkpoint, but people later found out that the machine was not working and chaos ensued. People picked up their bags and laptops and walked to another end. It was too busy. Maybe the increase is because it’s wedding season or because of post-pandemic flights, but it’s very heavy.

Airlines, meanwhile, have started asking passengers to arrive at least 3.5 hours before departure.

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Airport officials attributed the queues to fewer counters, smaller space, more passengers and limited security staff.

To address the situation, the Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) said it is working to meet the demand at T3. “Together with stakeholders such as CISF and Immigration, we are constantly working to meet demand, including deploying additional systems and manpower. We deployed additional manpower to assist passengers, especially at key bottlenecks, and relocated an additional X-ray machine. All stakeholders, including CISF and Immigration, will also require additional manpower to further improve the situation,” it said on Saturday.

Sources said limited CISF staffers have been deployed at the airport, leading to longer waiting times for passengers.

T3 manages more than 500 domestic and 250 international flights and a daily passenger load of 1.9-1.95 lakh, making it the airport’s busiest point. According to DIAL, they have reduced the number of flights for congestion – from 22 flights per hour (pre-Covid) to 19 flights per hour (November 2022).

Union Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia also spoke about the congestion problem in December. He told the media: “Certain airports are facing problems due to congestion. We have had several meetings with the ministry, major airports and other officials. We have asked them to take the necessary measures to relieve the areas. ‘Congestion’ of flights during rush hours often leads to congestion… Delhi now operates 19 flights per hour instead of 22. We are trying to reduce this further so that passengers do not experience any problems. We are trying to deploy more staff at the entry point. Finally, at security, we made two suggestions to airports. We need to increase the capacity of trolly (hand luggage) and increase the number of staff…”

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A spokesperson for DIAL said they are also using technology such as using an AI-based passenger tracking system. “Going forward, the implementation of DigiYatra should help reduce waiting time…DIAL is also creating new infrastructure and facilities as part of the Phase 3A expansion plan, such as the opening of new T1 arrivals and the phased opening of integrated T1” , he said.


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