New Delhi: Months after a woman was allegedly asked to remove her prosthetic leg at an airport, another passenger with a prosthetic leg recounts his humiliation at Delhi's IGI Airport. He was forced to strip for a security check. This comes two months after the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security promised to make airports more friendly for the differently abled.
Rajesh Bhatia, a 45-year-old auditing professional, travels extensively for work. He is also an above knee amputee who lost his right leg in a road accident more than 20 years ago. On October 8, Rajesh went through an experience that left him shaken and humiliated.
Rajesh was made to sit inside the CISF checking room, stripped from below the waist, listening to security personnel discuss how to scan his prosthetic limb.
Just in August, the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security met members of various disability rights groups, took their recommendations and promised to bring about a positive change.
The following proposals were made by the differently abled rights groups:
- Allowing differently abled passengers to use their own wheelchairs rather than being forced to shift to the one provided by the airport.
- Ensuring that scanning be done in a manner that those with prosthetics need not be made to remove their artificial limbs.
- Regular sensitisation programs for airport staff to help them deal with differently abled passengers on a case by case basis.
Despite promising to amend the standard operating procedure, nothing has changed on ground. This situation begs the question as to how difficult it is to ensure the dignity for the differently abled without compromising security.