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Friday, 15 December, 2017, 15 : 00 PM [IST]

Airports set to install e-gates for Aadhaar-based travel from 2018

According to a report in Mint, the civil aviation ministry has chosen Aadhaar as the digital identity needed for paperless airport entry and major Indian airports are expected to install e-gates to allow Aadhaar- based travel from next year, a senior government official said. At present, passengers have to show printed or mobile air tickets and a government identity card to enter airports. Under the new system, airport entry would be based on biometrics. 

By January-end, the aviation ministry is expected to complete the process of creating a template document for instituting an Aadhaar-based system at airports, approved by Rajiv Nayan Choubey, civil aviation secretary, security agencies. 

Airports will then be allowed to adopt biometric readers and other technology vendors to implement the system. A database that talks freely between the stakeholders— airports, airlines and Aadhaar authorities — is already being worked out, he added. “I would say from winter 2018 many of the major airports will be in a position to offer this service,” Choubey said. Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Cochin airports and the state-owned Airports Authority of India (which runs over 100 airports) have shown interest in moving to the new system which would not only save costs but also improve their security architecture. A lesser known benefit of introducing Aadhaar-based airport entry will be capacity augmentation. 

For the service provided by these e-gates, reduced airport gate manpower and no check-in counters will also help save costs. To be sure, according to Choubey, the airports will continue to have manual gates for passengers who do not want to go through the Aadhaar-based process. The manual gates will also be used for international travel. A specially formed cell at the ministry has been working on the project for several months now and the reason Aadhaar has been chosen after much deliberation is because of its unique database, Choubey said.

(Source: Mint)
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