The one handbag guidelines come in addition to the existing single check-in baggage rule imposed during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Passengers taking domestic flights will no longer be allowed to carry more one hand baggage, the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) has ordered in a new circular, imposing ‘One Hand Bag rule’ across airports. The new rule has been imposed with an aim to ease out congestion and security concerns on the ground and reduce the burden at screening points at airports.
The decision bars any passenger from carrying more than one cabin baggage on flights within India, with an exception to the items listed by the government in the circular.
“As per BCAS AVSEC Circular Nos. 06/2000 & Lt12000, no passenger should be permitted to carry more than one handbag other than those items already listed in the circular including lady’s bag,” BCAS said in an order issued on January 19.
“It has been seen that passenger on an average carries 02-03 Nos of handbags to the screening point. This has led to increased clearance time as well as delays, congestion in PESC point and inconvenience to passengers,” the order read.
The civil aviation body instructed airlines, airport operators and other stakeholders to ensure the enforcement of the ‘One Hand Bag rule’ and display it on hoardings as well as passenger tickets and boarding pass for clarity.
“Airline may be made responsible and depute staff to guide pax, check and verify their handbag status etc, before allowing the passenger for Pre-embarkation security checks,” the BCAS stated.
“All airlines may be directed suitably to inform passengers and to display ‘one handbag rule’ on their tickets/boarding passes very conspicuously,” it added.
The new order comes as an additional restriction for travellers while smoothening the process of security checks at the airport. The Centre had already imposed a one-bag policy for check-in baggage to ease congestion and ensure health protocols during the Covid-19 pandemic.