New Delhi, Jul 24: Supporting Continental Airlines on frisking former President of India, Abdul Kalam, the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) said that it was not a mistake at all.
The US agency insists that after the 9/11 attacks, the security checks have been intensified and India's list exempting select VIPs from airport checks was irrelevant.
TSA which was set up particularly after the 9/11 attacks s responsible for security of US transportation systems that include highways, railroads, buses, mass-transit systems, ports and 450 airports.
Speaking on the list of dignitaries who are exempted from checks by Indian law, TSA said, "such a list does not mirror US requirements for passengers that are exempted from pre-board screening when traveling aboard US commercial aircraft."
It also clarified that the former Heads of State and other VIPs traveling from an international location to the US on a US commercial aircraft were “screened according to the same screening procedures as for any other passenger".
According to its rules those exempted from checks are 'active Heads of State' travelling 'under protective escort of the US Secret Service' or 'high level active foreign dignitaries under the protective escort of the US Diplomatic Security Service' and 'vetted through the Department of State and TSA'.
If requested then a 'private screening' can be provided, it said.