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Internal Port Visit

Internal Port Visit

Teena Sidana (54)

Venkat Thogaru (55)

Varun Bajla (56)

Vinay Bohra (57)

Vipul Vikram Singh (58)

Yash Saxena (59)

Internal Port Visit

Internal Port Visit

Air Cargo

The Air cargo terminal is situated on the IGI Airport and is divided into two major
sections namely the Export Warehouse and the Import Warehouse. We visited the
export ware house first. A brief about both of them is as follows:

i. Export warehouse

At the entrance are the ‘Truck Docks’ where the trucks filled with cargo to be
exported are brought by the Clearing Agents. The area where they are stored till
approved is called the ‘Examination Area’. The cargo needs to be approved by the
Custom’s Agent’s before it passes through. The freight to be paid by the exporting
party is decided on the basis of the weight of the containers and the materials in it.
Most of the airlines (through which the cargo is to be sent) have their offices located
on the first floor of the warehouse. They should be informed and booked in advance
for the sending of the cargo.
After the cargo is received at the entrance of the warehouse, it is sent to the
Custom’s for approval. They have to examine a minimum 10% of the cargo and can
even call back the cargo form the bonded area to the examination area, in case they
are suspicious. It should adhere to the necessary packaging and labelling
compliances. Packaging standards are different in case of dangerous goods such as
explosives, chemicals, oxidisers, corrosives, etc. It is necessary since certain items
can be carried only in cargo aircraft and not otherwise. However, there are no
separate charges that are levied for carrying such goods; just an indication of their
nature. These are decided on the basis of the IATA norms and mentioned on the
entrance. Only after it is approved, it is send forward. From here, first it is passed
Internal Port Visit
through the X-Ray testing machines to check for any hazardous goods or materials
present in it.
After the Custom officers clear it, they give it the ‘Let Export’ order and hence the
cargo is moved form the Examination area to the ‘Bonded area’.
There also exists an ‘Export Strong Room’ which is used to store the valuable items
such as currency, jewellery, etc.
The export ship duty officer is responsible for the overall supervision of the shipment
and export loading.
The loading base for the cargo is of the standard size 125 X 85 inches. It can take up
to 4.5 tonnes of cargo on an average. The maximum height of the cargo can be of 5
feet. The cargo is covered with a polythene sheet and the process of doing this is
called ‘Lashing’. No loose movement of cargo is allowed. After the unit load Device
(ULD) is loaded and passes on, it is stacked mechanically on to the racks and hence
given a unique location number. The location ticket is collected by the Elevated
Transfer Vehicle (ETV) operator. The ULD number as well as the destination needs to
be noted down by the respective airlines. Moreover, the airlines pay for all the
loading, stacking, etc. and are also liable to may demurrage charges in case the
process takes more than 48hrs. Also, in case the cargo is lying in the warehouse for
more than six weeks and there is no one to claim it, it is automatically transferred to
the Special Disposal Cell.
All the cargo is off loaded through a common terminal.
The most important fact to be noticed here is that if the cargo is not claimed by any
airline within 48 hours, it is charged extra on per hour basis and the cost has to be
borne by the Clearing Agent.
The air cargo terminal exports up to 400-450 tonnes on a daily average and imports
close to 350 tonnes. The usual Export items are readymade garments, carpets,
leather, generic medicines, etc.

Unit Load Device:

All the pallets and containers are known as ULDs. Each one of them is given a unique
serial number, where the first two/three letters identify the series of the ULD; the
centre series is their serial number and the last few alphabets is the airline code.
For e.g.: AKE62313DHL signifies that AKE is the series of the cargo, 62313 is its
unique serial number and the last three signify DHL logistics.

Freighters: Deccan 360 is the most common freighter and uses an Airbus 310 with a
capacity of 45-50 tonnes. Whereas, a Boeing can take up to 100 tonnes in one go.
Internal Port Visit
The warehouse also has a facility for storing the Transhipment Cargo i.e. cargo
moving from one international location to another and stopping at Delhi. No
clearance or inspection is required for such cargo since they are anyways inspected
at their point of origin and at the destination. They just need to get an official
document signed that says: ‘Not opened Cargo’ and give them the necessary

Cold Storage Facility: There is also a cold storage facility at the exit of the warehouse
for perishable goods. The cargo within the aircraft is also maintained at a suitable
There were three cold storage cells here: Two of them were at 2degree Celsius and
the third on -6degrees Celsius.

ii. Import Warehouse

Each of the shipment arriving at the import warehouse is given a Cargo manifest and
an Airway Bill (AWB). After giving them these documents the shipment is inspected
by the custom’s officers here. However, no X-ray check is done for the import cargo
as against the export cargo. After the customs’ approve the cargo, they issue an ‘Out
of Charge’ slip for the same.
After checking the cargo, a Segregation sheet is prepared where we get a list of
perishable/non perishable, damaged/not damaged cargo. It is then cross checked
with the manifest.
A special officer known as the ‘Ship Duty Officer’ is responsible for feeding all the
data about the cargo according to the manifest in the system.
The airlines, on the other hand, would simultaneously issue the delivery order to the
consignee and inform him/her that the cargo has arrived. The freight charges can
either be prepaid or paid later.
The unloading of the cargo has been outsourced to JACK Cargo. The performance
parameters for the same are:

Time taken to unload Weight

Up to 4 hours Up to 10 tonnes
4-8 hours 10-20 tonnes
8-12 hours >20 tonnes
Internal Port Visit
Similar to the Export Strong Room, there exists an Import Strong Room where all
valuable cargo is kept. Moreover, similar cold storage facilities exist here as well.
At the exit, a location slip is issued and the good is tracked for the convenience of
the consignee.
Most of the cargo that arrives is from Europe, USA, Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore.
The major items for import are telecom equipments, machinery parts, chemicals,
and electronic items.

ICD Tughlakabad Visit

Inland Container Depot

A common user facility with public

authority status equipped with fixed
installations and offering services for
handling and temporary storage of
import/export laden and empty containers
carried under customs control and with
Customs and other agencies competent to
clear goods for home use, warehousing,
temporary admissions, re-export,
temporary storage for onward transit and
outright export. Transhipment of cargo can
also take place from such stations

The primary functions of an ICD may be summed up as under:

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a. Receipt and dispatch/delivery of cargo.
b. Stuffing and stripping of containers.
c. Transit operations by rail/road to and from serving ports.
d. Customs clearance.
e. Consolidation and desegregation of LCL cargo.
f. Temporary storage of cargo and containers.
g. Reworking of containers.
h. Maintenance and repair of container units.

The operations of the ICDs revolve around the following centres of activity:-

i. Rail Siding (in case of a rail based terminal)

The place where container trains are received, dispatched and handled in a
terminal. Similarly, the containers are loaded on and unloaded from rail
wagons at the siding through overhead cranes and / or other lifting

ii. Container Yard

Container yard occupies the largest

area in the ICD. It is stacking area
were the export containers are
aggregated prior to dispatch to port;
import containers are stored till
Customs clearance and where
empties await onward movement.
Likewise, some stacking areas are
earmarked for keeping special
containers such as refrigerated,
hazardous, overweight/over-length, etc.

iii. Warehouse

A covered space/shed where export cargo is received and import cargo

stored/delivered; containers are stuffed/stripped or reworked; LCL exports
are consolidated and import LCLs are unpacked; and cargo is physically
examined by Customs. Export and import consignments are generally
handled either at separate areas in a warehouse or in different nominated

iv. Gate Complex

Internal Port Visit
The gate complex regulates the entry and exists of road vehicles carrying
cargo and containers through the terminal. It is place where documentation,
security and container inspection procedures are undertaken.


The benefits as envisaged from an ICD are as follows:

Concentration points for long distance cargoes and its unitisation.

 Service as a transit facility.

 Customs clearance facility available near the centres of production and consumption
 Reduced level of demurrage and pilferage.
 No Customs required at gateway ports.
 Issuance of through bill of lading by shipping lines, hereby resuming full liability of
 Reduced overall level of empty container movement.
 Competitive transport cost.
 Reduced inventory cost.
 Increased trade flows.
Internal Port Visit


ICD Tughlakabad was visited as a part of the Academic inland port visit on 7th August, 2009.

The ICD Tughlakabad is the largest dry port in South Asia and the leading centre for
importers and exporters of the Northern Region. This ICD began functioning at Tughlakabad
in 1993, prior to which it was located at Pragati Maidan. Container Corporation of India Ltd
(CONCOR), which is the Public Sector Undertaking, is responsible for this ICD. CONCOR are
also the carriers, through rail, of import and export containers between ICD Tughlakabad
and the Gateway Ports of Mumbai, Nhava Sheva and Chennai.

This ICD is the focal Port for the ICDs at PPG, Faridabad and Garhi Harsaru and the
movement of the containers between the ICDs to and fro takes place by road. The Customs
area houses two covered Sheds, one for import and the other for exports. The main
Internal Port Visit
CONCOR building houses the administrative staff of Customs and CONCOR as well as the
offices of CHAs and Shipping lines. The staff working at ICD Tughlakabad is the regular
Departmental staff and not on cost recovery basis.

It is also a certified ISO 9001:2000 terminal.

The Administrative Block has

a. Office of Customs,
c. Bank,
d. Shipping Lines,
e. CHAs and
f. Surveyors.

Four full length rail lines are available in the Customs area which brings the containers
by train from Gateway ports such as Mumbai, Nhava Sheva, Chennai, besides bringing
the containers by road from other ports such as Haldia, Calcutta and Kandla, etc.

The equipment and facilities are the latest in technology, incognito is the Rail Linkage to the
gateway ports, and with the Delhi-Mumbai route forming a part of the Golden Quadrilateral
of Indian Railways, the importance of this establishment is even more. In terms of road
transport the nearness with the NH2 and having approach to major roads in Delhi
connecting all National Highways.

Major Import Items

a. machinery,
b. electronic goods,
c. plastic, chemicals,
d. motor vehicles and parts
e. metal and metal scrap – is banned due to environmental issues

On export side major items being exported through ICD are leather garments and
leather products, readymade garments, machinery, agricultural products especially
Internal Port Visit

Facilities and Equipments

ICD, TKD (ICD, Tughlakabad) has the following infrastructure facilities for operations, located inside
the custom bonded area

4 full train-length rail lines

6,000 square meters covered warehouse space for imports which is sufficient to accommodate
cargo of 160 TEUs
l10, 000 square meters covered warehouse space for export cargo which is sufficient to
accommodate a cargo of 240 TEUs
1,500 square meters of especially reserved space for LCL consolidation.
Open space for stacking of 5,000 loaded containers
Open space for stacking 6,000 empty containers
Empty parks in Power Cabin (PRC), Ballabgarh (BVH), NMS Dadri
Six hectares parking area to accommodate 400 trailers
Fully computerized import and export documentation
Computerized weighbridge facility
Container repair facilities
One rail mounted gantry crane
Three Rubber Tyred Gantry Cranes each with a capacity of 40 tonnes
Eight loaded reach stackers (40 tonnes)
Six empty reach stackers (16 tonnes)
Internal Port Visit
Internal Port Visit

Offered Services

Establishment of Customer Service Cell to attend to queries

Provision of enquiry terminal in Export-Import Cell for direct access to information by Customers.
Display of train running chart daily on notice board.
Provision of the enquiry module of the main computer system to major shipping lines and other
Import removals round-the-clock
Updating train running and summaries of the trains running between New Delhi and Mumbai on
the Internet at the Concor India website
Introduction of separate trains for NSICT and JNPCT
Introduction of high-speed wagons running at 100 kmph
Augmentation of reefer services and their dispatch by high speed trains
Guaranteed overnight export and import shifting
24 hrs. acceptance of export cargo and containers
Ensuring the placement of import examination containers at ground level only. Export warehouse
operations round-the-clock
Receipt and delivery of empty containers round-the-clock
Separation of export stacks for JNPCT, NSICT, Mumbai Port and other terminals.
Facility for dispatch of LCL reworking containers by rail to JNPT and onward by road to CFSs in
Dronagiri Node.
Special discounted slab rates for 20’ containers with gross weight in the range of 24-30 MTs.
Road-cum-rail movement of export cargo to Bangladesh/ Nepal border.
Handling and transportation of over dimensional cargo/ containers by rail/road.
Provision of PDA (Pre-Deposit Account) to the customers to facilitate financial transactions
Provision of cheque facility to distinguished customers
Waiver and Refund of Wharfage Charges on case to case basis
Internal Port Visit
Waiver and Refund of Ground Rent Charges on case to case basis
Refund of claims in case the containers/cargo gets damaged

ICD, TKD provides following services to exporters, importers and shipping lines:

Customs clearance and cargo inspection within the Custom bonded area
Import/Export LCL/FCL cargo handling
Receipts and dispatch of container trains between ICD, TKD and other ICDs as well as gateway
Receipts and dispatch of containers by road from and to other ICDs, CFSs and customers’ premises
Loading and unloading of containers to and from trains
Stuffing and de-stuffing of containers in the warehouses
Storage of empty containers offered by shipping lines and handling of loaded and empty reefer
Internal Port Visit

Technology @ ICD, TKD

 CONCOR is using various online applications like Export/Import Terminal

Management System (ETMS), Domestic Terminal Management System (DTMS),
Oracle Financials-ERP, HR-Payroll system
 Based on Centralized architecture deployed through Citrix environment and running
over VSAT based hybrid network.
 RDT’s are being used in the ICD/TKD yard and ICD/Dadri for online container tracking
and entry of unloading / loading of containers on to wagons.
Internal Port Visit
 Interface software was developed for automatic up gradation of entries through
RDT’s into CCLS and ETMS database for EXIM operations.
 RDT’s are also interfaced with our Domestic Terminal Management System (DTMS)
at DCT/Okhla, TNPM/Chennai and WFD/Bangalore.
 Enabled any user to query the system either through LAN or Web to get the latest
status and location of a container in the yard.
 Facility for electronic filing (e-filing) of commercial documents of CCLS (Container
and Cargo Logistic System) has been provided to customers.
 Facility enables customers like Shipping lines, Importers, Exporters and CHA's to file
the required documents online for process and take necessary printouts of
processed output through web from anywhere without physically coming to ICD at
Tughlakabad. Digital Signatures have been integrated with e-filing on CCLS to make
the system more secure.
Internal Port Visit

Inland Container Depots:

The Weak Link in Container
Transportation Security

After the visit, some research led to the question of transportation security at ICDs.

ICDs are a common user facility for handling/temporary storage of import/export laden and
empty shipping containers. Transhipment of cargo can also take place from such terminals
and the Customs clear goods at the ICD. No Customs clearance is required at gateway ports
thus it increases trade flows and also decongests seaports.

The ICD Tughlakabad is the largest dry port in South Asia and the leading centre for box
traffic transportation. Among the major items transported through this dry port are
machinery, electronic goods, metal and metal scrap. It is the latter that has caught the
attention of security forces.

In October 2004, bomb disposal squads of the Indian Army and the National Security Guards
diffused live rocket shells from the scrap consignment that arrived at the Bhushan Steel
Company from Iran. This US $ 25,000 consignment loaded in shipping containers left Bander
Abbas in Iran on board M V Kuo Long. The containers were bound for the Inland Container
Depot (ICD), Tughlakabad, via Mundra port in Gujarat. The security agencies recovered
more than fifty shells/bombs in the consignment. Unfortunately, the procedures followed
for inspection of containers at the ICD Tughlakabad were lax.

At the ICD, the container is unsealed and examined in the presence of the customs
examination staff. During examination, a certain percentage of the packages are opened
and this percentage is determined by the risk factors that are evaluated by the Custom
department on the basis of risk assessment techniques. The importer is required to make the
necessary arrangements for the speedy de-stuffing of the cargo in conformance with the
examination orders given by the Appraising Groups.

As per the manning guidelines of the Central Board of Excise & Customs, the ICDs would
normally operate with a staff of 13 officers

1 Assistant/Deputy Commissioner, 2 Appraisers, 2 Inspectors, 2 UDCs, 2 LDCs, 4 Sepoys) and

the ICDs engaged in only exports have 7officers (1 Assistant/Deputy Commissioner, 1
Appraiser, 1 Inspector, 1 UDC, 1 LDC, 2 Sepoys)

The above clearly illustrates that the ICD are ill equipped to undertake a thorough
inspection of the containers. This is one of the reasons why explosive materials and live
ammunition escaped the eyes of the ICD Tughlakabad officials.
Internal Port Visit
It is true that it is humanly impossible to physically check each container for its contents but
what is more worrisome is that the ICD at Tughlakabad has emerged as the weakest link in
the container transportation chain in the country.

Nearly 3000 tons of scrap loaded in some two hundred containers arrives daily at the ICD.
Similar is the story of a large number of ICDs in the country. Ironically, none of the Indian
seaports other than Nawa Sheva near Mumbai has explosive detection equipment, and only
one, has container x-ray facilities.

The Indian Government response to the discovery of unexploded ordnance was a notification
from the Ministry of Commerce laying down new rules for the import of waste metal. The
notification stipulated that the import of metallic waste and scrap shall henceforth be
permitted only in shredded and compacted form but allowed the import of loose scrap
through "major ports only."

Apparently, the government has also removed the clause in the pre-shipment certificate,
which seeks the importer to specify the country of origin, from where the metallic scrap is
imported. What is more disturbing is the fact that none of the ICDs have any cargo scanning

Need for Technology

As noted, it is humanly impossible to physically check each container for its contents. So
where does the solution lie? The answer is through harnessing technology to act as a force
multiplier. These technologies must be non-intrusive, safe for operators, cost effective, highly
reliable and more importantly speedy in order to avoid unwarranted interruptions to the
flow of commerce. There is thus a need to install scanning equipment to examine contents in
containers without unloading. Therefore, for a safe system of commerce, a comprehensive
and credible approach to security is essential