‘English’ recruit for CIAL dog squad

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The dog squad at the Cochin International Airport (CIAL) would soon get two more recruits that include the English Cocker Spaniel, a breed that can be easily trained and is known for its intelligence and adaptability.

“Currently there are five canines in the squad, all Labrador Retriever. The airport authorities have, in principle, given the approval for the new recruitment. Though the maintenance is costly, the dog squad has been very effective in detecting even minute illegal substances,” a CISF official said.

The move is the first step towards security upgradation of the airport ahead of the major expansion plans, including the erection of the state of the art international terminal.

“Permission has been granted and a portion of the Passenger Service Fee (PSF) has been allotted for strengthening the dog squad. There is a provision to use a part of the PSF for security-related aspects,” an airport official said.

Besides anti-sabotage checks, the squad would be used for patrolling on the airport premises at least twice a day. The CISF has also formulated a standard operational procedure for the day-to-day functioning of the squad.

“The purchase cost and training would together cost about Rs 2-3 lakh per dog. Besides, three persons — two main handlers and an assistant — are deputed for each dog,” the CISF official said.

The other two airports in the state too are about to acquire the canine squad after the Airport Authority of India’s (AAI) direction to form Bomb Detection and Disposal Squads in all airports.

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