While gold continues to be the high demand metal in India, a new smuggling route through China has been unearthed and is going to keep the intelligence and enforcement agencies busy for the next couple of weeks.
The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), Siliguri on Thursday has been able to make the biggest seizure of smuggled gold in the country the recent past.
On a tip-off that a huge consignment of gold was being smuggled from China through the Indo-China border of Sikkim and was destined to Kolkata via Siliguri, the DRI, Siliguri, launched an operation on Thursday.
This is for the first time gold smuggling has been reported through the Chinese border. So far, gold consignments have been entering India through Myanmar and Bangladesh.
During the operation the DRI, Siliguri team was able to arrest three persons and recover a huge amount of gold bars. “Three persons travelling in a WagonR were intercepted and recovered 32kg of gold bars having foreign markings,” informed DRI sources.
Sources added, “The recovered 32 kg (32 bars) of foreign marking gold bars were valued at Rs 10,32,70,400.”
Following the seizure of the gold bars, the DRI, Siliguri sleuths were able to recover a huge amount of money from the residence of the arrested trio.
Sources informed, “Gold bars were being carried in specially-tailored waist belts. On immediate follow-up, the DRI team recovered Indian currency notes worth Rs 20,19,180 from their residence at Siliguri.”
“This is a biggest seizure of gold in recent past,” DRI sources added.
DRI officials are interrogating the three smugglers arrested in the connection. They are also trying to ascertain the origin of the gold consignment. “This is definitely a new trend, and we will do everything to ensure that the smuggling network is cracked,” one of the officials told Northeast Now.
From prima facie investigation, it has come to fore that the consignment was shipped from Lhasa in Tibet. Involvement of some of the Tibetan refugees in the smuggling network cannot be ruled out, the officials claimed.