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Delhi airport to open operations post lockdown

UV disinfection tunnels, separate airlines gates proposed; all passenger baggage will be passed through UV disinfection tunnels at both the points of departure and arrival.

Statesman News Service | New Delhi |

A comprehensive list of guidelines and SOPs (standard operating procedures) for passengers and staff, in anticipation of flight services being restarted after the lockdown ends, has been released by the Delhi Airport, news agency PTI reported on Sunday.

The measures, meant to prevent further spread of the COVID-19 virus, include marked areas outside and inside terminals and airport buses to ensure social distancing, widespread provision of hand sanitisers, thermal screening of all passengers and thorough disinfection of baggage carts/trolleys, an official told PTI.

All passenger baggage will be passed through UV disinfection tunnels at both the points of departure and arrival. Once flights are allowed to resume, an important change for passengers is the move from the ‘all gates, all airlines’ system practiced pre lock down to ‘allocation of gates by airlines to distribute passenger load in (the) forecourt’. Under ‘all gates, all airlines’ system, passengers could enter terminals from any gate.

Under the revised system, each airline is allocated a certain number of check-in rows and entry gates, and passengers for one airline will not be allowed to use facilities designated for another. Domestic airlines will operate from check-in rows A to H and entry gates 1 to 5.

International flights will operate from check-in rows J, K, L and M and entry gates 6, 7 and 8. According to the reports, visitors entry into all terminals will be prohibited. SOP is also being worked out with cab providers for disinfection of cabs before use at the airport. The document also has a strict and stringent SOP for F&B, lounges, retail and all other non-aero areas’.

It also encourages the use of contactless payment to avail of all facilities at the airport. While these measures are specific to Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport, similar guidelines and SOPs are likely to be enforced at all airports in the country. Yesterday, the DGCA had issued a circular extending ban on flights till May 17.