The civil aviation ministry may soon begin a large-scale exercise of profiling all air passengers, officials of the ministry said.
For the first time ever, photographs, biometric details and other information about all passengers will be collected and each passenger will be assigned a unique number. So every time a passenger books a ticket after registering his profile, she would only have to provide her name and the unique number and all her details would be retrieved instantaneously from the system, the official said.
“It is too early to say when the exercise will begin. But a feasibility report will be prepared by the National Informatics Centre in three months to look at the cost and timeframe for the exercise. The report will also work out a system on how this proposal can be executed including whether it will be the airline or the airport operator who will collect the details from the passenger. Irrespective of who does it, there will be a central data pool maintained by the ministry and it will be completely secure. We will also ensure that bookings done via travel portals in this system are foolproof,” he said.
The system aims not just at helping passengers book tickets quickly, but also at creating a huge database of all passengers and tracking how often they fly to each destination, said an official of the Airports Authority of India.
“This will help in enhancing security at airports across the country,” said the official.