Ma­jor­ity of Gulf gold carriers from Karim­na­gar

Deccan Chronicle - - CITY -

Smug­gling of gold via flights has seen a huge in­crease in the re­cent past. The air in­tel­li­gence unit at the Ra­jiv Gandhi In­ter­na­tional Air­port at Shamshabad has so far reg­is­tered 40 cases this year, while it was only ten cases till Au­gust 2016.

Of­fi­cials said that more cases are reg­is­tered due to a rise in de­tec­tion. “Though there is an in­crease in de­tec­tion, it will not ac­count for the 10 per cent of the to­tal gold which is smug­gled into the coun­try,” a se­nior cus­toms of­fi­cial said. They say that the syn­di­cate rakes in a profit of `5 lakh for each kg of gold smug­gled.

Gold smug­gling has re­cently turned out to be one of the lu­cra­tive ways of earn­ing. It has be­come a pre­ferred route to earn quick money. The eas­i­est way to smug­gle gold is con­ceal­ing it un­der clothes or un­der­gar­ments. If caught, they can re­lease the gold by pay­ing the cus­toms duty and the fine. “Un­less there is a spe­cific tipoff, a car­rier can­not be iden­ti­fied and caught. Due to the rush at the air­port, each pas­sen­ger can­not be sub­jected to Peo­ple work­ing in the Gulf coun­tries are the easy tar­get of smug­glers, who lure them with com­mis­sion ac­cord­ing to the value of the gold they carry.

A ma­jor­ity of the carriers hail from the un­di­vided Karim­na­gar fol­lowed by Nizam­abad dis­trict.

A re­cent seizure re­vealed that a per­son from the un­di­vided Karim­na­gar dis­trict went to the Gulf a decade ago and started a com­pany. He sends the con­tra­band with his em­ploy­ees who are re­turn­ing to their na­tive place in In­dia.

“Lit­tle is known about him other than his com­mu­nity screen­ing,” a se­nior cus­toms of­fi­cial said.

Of­fi­cials say that in most cases, the carriers eas­ily walk out with the gold as there is less chance for sus­pi­cion. “Though there is an in­crease in the num­ber of cases, the ac­tual de­tails. He is never in the pic­ture,” cus­toms of­fi­cials said.

The blue col­lar work­ers are their main tar­gets. When the em­ployer re­fuses to pay the air fare, the or­gan­iser lures them with the money for the air fare and ask them to smug­gle gold. In some cases, the con­sign­ment de­tec­tion or the seizure is less than the 10 per cent of the gold smug­gled into the coun­try. This is the sit­u­a­tion at all the in­ter­na­tional air­ports in the coun­try,” said the of­fi­cial from the cus­toms.

The smug­gled gold is given as a gift to rel­a­tives who will col­lect it on ar­rival.

“In some cases, the carriers are not ac­tu­ally aware that they are smug­gling gold,” the of­fi­cial added.

The fine in­cludes 36 per cent of the to­tal value of the gold with 20 per cent penalty. can be con­fis­cated only if the value is above `20 lakh.

If the car­rier is a re­peat of­fender, the penalty amount will in­crease. Of­ten carriers are caught and the or­gan­is­ers are never brought into light.

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