US airport violates protocol, frisked Kalam twice in Sept

Former president APJ Abdul Kalam was frisked twice at an US airport in September, an act that violates protocol followed by almost every other country.

Former India president APJ Abdul Kalam. Getty Images

The incident had occurred at New York's John F Kennedy airport on 29 September. Security personnel patted Kalam down before he was allowed aboard an Air India flight, according to an ibnlive report.

They then tried to frisk him again once he was seated saying they'd forgotten to check his jacket and shoes for explosives.

But it was not a new experience for Kalam. In April 2009, Kalam had been frisked by officials of US airliner Continental Airlines despite the fact that his name featured in the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security's list of people exempt from security checks in India.

As per the US law, only current cabinet ministers are exempt from security screening.

The Ministry of External Affairs has reacted, saying, "Under US law only cabinet ministers are exempt from security screening. Mr Kalam was accorded due courtesies at the airport. He was escorted to a private screening area."

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Updated Date: Nov 13, 2011 13:28 PM

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