GUWAHATI, April 29: Eight gold biscuits weighing over 1 kg were seized by GRP from Guwahati railway station here on Sunday. GRP also held a man, identified as Harish Mahmood, for who was carrying the gold biscuits.
Superintendent of Railway Police (SRP) HK Das said, “During a routine check, Guwahati GRP today recovered eight gold biscuits from the possession of Mahmood who was travelling in the Kamrup Express. The total weight of the gold biscuits is around 1.3 kilo and it is worth around Rs 43 lakh.” Sources said that Mahmood, who originally hails from Kannur in Kerala, was allegedly smuggling the gold biscuits to West Bengal. “He was travelling from Dimapur in Nagaland and was on his way to Kolkata. The seized item and the accused have been handed over to customs department for further probe,” sources added.
Of late, gold smuggling has been rampant from across the Myanmar border. Most of these items are smuggled through Manipur, Nagaland and Assam to other parts of the country, like West Bengal, where they are in high demand in clandestine gold markets.
During the recently-concluded Lok Sabha polls in the state, police and flying squads made frequent seizures of gold items which had been smuggled into the state. Assam chief electoral officer had said that gold worth around Rs 36 lakh were seized in the period during which the model code of conduct was effective in the state.
Earlier in March, in two separate operations, illegal gold worth Rs 28 lakh was seized at the railway station by the GRP sleuths here.
Describing the rise in gold smuggling, Das added, “While in 2016, GRP had seized 19.31 kg of gold worth Rs 57,95,340, the number went up to almost 75 kg of gold worth Rs 22,48,10,670 in 2017. At least 33 persons were arrested in connection with smuggling gold.”
The majority of illegal gold items were found to have made their way to clandestine jewellery markets in New Delhi, Ghaziabad, Siliguri, Mumbai, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. (TNN)