The difficulties faced by international passengers owing to flight delays last week was because of the non-observance of Government of Indias Customs Rules and Procedures by Air India, the Customs authorities alleged.
The Customs authorities alleged that it was a lapse on part of the Air India that caused delay of Muscat and Sharjah-bound Air India flights from Cochin International Airport last week. The Airline did not submit passenger and cargo manifest and crew personal property declarations to Customs which are mandatory and? required by Customs at every airport during the? arrival and departure of an international flight, they said.
Customs Rules and Procedures issued by the Government of India has gained importance in the wake of global terrorist activities. Customs officers primarily rely on these documents to detect cases of smuggling of drugs, fake currency, contrabands and wildlife-related matters, which are of much national security concern as terrorist outfits are engaged in such activities, they said.
Senior Customs officers have convened a meeting of all airlines officials at the Cochin Airport recently to explain to them the sensitivity and requirement of such documents and procedures. All the airlines heads have been requested to ensure that the documents reach Customs authorities on time so that similar incident could be avoided in future, they said.
It is not understood why Air India alone is not willing to comply with the government instructions when all other airlines are following them, they said.