The Customs department at the Chandigarh International Airport on Saturday seized gold weighing around 900 gm from an Indigo flight, which arrived from Dubai in the morning. Officials said the value of the seized gold was approximately Rs 24 lakh.
An airport official said the gold was seized from a seat of the flight which arrived from Dubai and the same flight goes to Delhi as a domestic flight. It was not known who kept the gold in the aircraft.
“The modus operandi of those who smuggle gold through this method is that they hide the stuff inside the flight and make arrangements so that it is retrieved by their men… the flight which arrived at Chandigarh from Dubai, then goes to Delhi. And, in Delhi, there is no presence of Customs officials as it becomes a domestic flight,” said an official privy to the case adding no one was detained in Saturday’s case. “The gold was in the form of washers. The gold was immediately seized,” said the official.
There has been an increase in gold smuggling at Chandigarh airport. Customs officials have prevented several such attempts at the airport recently. In July, a passenger was nabbed after officials recovered two pieces of gold bar from him. The passengers had inserted the bars inside the rectum in a bid to smuggle the gold.
Several other incidents have come to light at the airport. “International operations started in 2016 only. The smugglers are trying different ways to smuggle the gold. The Customs department is alert and making all possible effort to prevent such activities,” said the official.