51 passengers caught with bullets at Delhi airport this year

The airport authorities would first de-board the passenger and lodge an FIR for illegal possession of ammunition. The criminal proceedings are then initiated in the court of law

In most cases, passengers claim ignorance about the presence of bullets in their bags | Photo: iStock

It is a known fact that carrying bullets (any ammunition for that matter) in flight is a criminal offence under the Arms Act. Passengers, however, continue to flout the norms, knowingly or unknowingly, and end up facing the law.

So far, this year, 51 such passengers have been charged at New Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport for carrying ammunition in their luggage, Delhi police said, adding, that every year, about 100 cases of bullets found in luggages are registered.

On Thursday, the Delhi police issued an advisory for air passengers to remind them that carrying bullets was a non-bailable offence and requested them to thoroughly check their bags before proceeding for security checks.

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In most cases, passengers claim ignorance about the presence of bullets in their bags and say they had borrowed the bags from someone else.

A 41-year-old man from Gujarat, who reached the Delhi airport to board a flight to Ahmedabad two days back, was arrested after five bullets recovered from his bag. The man had an arms license, which was valid only in Gujarat. The man said he forgot to remove the bullets from his luggage. Police found five bullets and two used bullet shells in his bag. Deputy commissioner of police (IGI Airport) Rajeev Ranjan said the passenger was a labour contractor. “On questioning, he said he was not aware of the bullets in his bag. He even produced his licence but it was valid in Gujarat only. Hence, a case under Arms Act was registered against him and he was offloaded,” Ranjan said.

The first thing that airport authorities do is to de-board the passenger, as per the legal provisions. Then an FIR is registered against the passenger for illegal possession of ammunition and criminal proceedings are initiated in the court of law.

Delhi police have warned passengers to be very careful while packing their luggage since carrying ammunition at the airport is a non-bailable offence.

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