Indian airlines to give international traveller data to Customs

New Delhi: Airlines will have to mandatorily provide details of all international passengers to the Customs department for preventing and prosecuting offences under the Customs Act, 1962 as well as any other domestic or international law.

Every airline will have to transfer the “passenger name record information” from their reservation system to the database of the Customs department for every international flight departing from India or arriving into the country, according to the Passenger Name Record Information Regulations, 2022 notified by the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) under the Ministry of Finance.

The information such as passenger name record (PNR), date of travel, credit card details and seat assigned will have to be shared at least 24 hours before departure and failure to comply will invite a minimum penalty of Rs 25,000 and maximum of Rs 50,000 for every act of non-compliance, the regulations say.

The details the airline will have to share include PNR (Passenger Name Record) locator code, date of reservation, date of intended travel, frequent flyer and information on other benefits such as free tickets and upgrades, all available contact information, billing information including credit card number, travel agency or agent, seat information as well as history of changes to the PNR.

Such data will be retained for a maximum period of five years after which it will be disposed of by depersonalisation or anonymisation but can be “re-personalised and unmasked when used in connection with an identifiable case, threat or risk for the specified purposes”.

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