Mumbai: The customs officials have arrested seven smugglers at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai in different cases registered in last two days. Out of these, the four smugglers had hidden the gold in microwave oven, mixer-grinder, car washing machine and vacuum cleaner.
The customs officials have recovered over eight kilograms gold worth Rs. 2.30 crore from their possession. All the smugglers were holding Indian passport and had arrived at CSIA from Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah.
Those who have arrested in the last two days include Faisal Veerumbin Chalil (arrived from Abu Dhabi), Irfanbhai Parvatsingh Rana (arrived from Dubai via Bahrain), Rashid Manikoth (arrived from Sharjah), and Abdussaleem Mohammed Pallickal (arrived from Dubai).
The remaining two passengers Vijay Kumar Natvarlal Rupapara and Manish Kumar Mansukhlal Khambani were arrested at CSIA on their departure to Lubumbashi via Addis Ababa. All the passengers were released on bail bond of Rs. one lakh amount.
On January 23, one passenger Dipak Kumar Dhirubhai Ijardar was arrested with 2000 Indian currency note worth Rs. 3.26 lakh. The passenger was also carrying US dollars equivalent to Rs. 6.74 lakh. Total value of currency recovered is found to be over Rs. 10 lakh.
The customs officials told the Free Press Journal that most of the smugglers are from Kerala’s Kasargod district and they were just the carrier in the racket. “These people are just middlemen and they carry the smuggled items into India for monetary consideration. We are yet to catch the big fish involved in the racket,” the official told the Free Press Journal.
The officer further informed the Free Press Journal that ‘someone comes to receive these carriers once they arrive at Mumbai airport and take them to a hotel in the city’.
The customs officials become alert when a passenger belonging to Kasargod district arrives at Mumbai airport from foreign countries.