Sikhs working at airports in India will continue to be permitted to take a small kirpan with them while going for work at these high-security installations.
Civil Aviation Security
While updating its circulars, the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) had recently amended an aviation security (AvSec) circular that permits Sikh passengers traveling on domestic flights within India to carry a kirpan — up to 9 inches long (22.86 cm) with the blade being not more than 6-inch-long (15.24 cm) — on their person. Due to an inadvertent error, it omitted “employees” from the purview of this order.
kirpan while working at airports in India
The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) raised the problem with the aviation ministry as it restricted amritdhari Sikh employees from wearing their kirpan while operating at airports in India. It had sought the withdrawal of the March 4, 2022, declaration.
“We got representations from the Sikh community about the same and accordingly have addressed that issue by issuing a corrigendum order on March 12. There’s nothing new in the order.
It simply seeks to remove the confusion caused by a newly amended circular,” told a BCAS official. Accordingly, the order given by BCAS DG Jaideep Prasad on March 12 says: “In place of (the confusion-causing para), following shall be substituted- ‘Kirpan may be carried by a Sikh passenger, on his person, provided the length of its edge does not exceed 15.24 cms (6 inches); and the total length of a Kirpan does not exceed 22.86 cms (9 inches).
It is permitted while traveling by air on Indian aircraft within India (domestic routes of fully domestic flights only,’).”The order has been issued with regard to the exception to the handling of restricted articles. “…for the purpose of safety of passengers, crew, aircraft, ground personnel and the general public in all matters related to safeguarding against acts of unlawful interference with civil aviation, directs the following (March 12 amendment).
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”BCAS has been updating its orders in recent days to improve the ease of doing business by wording them just to avoid any confusion to stakeholders.
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Source: Time of India