A fine of over Rs 1.73 lakh was imposed on a Ludhiana woman by the Customs department at Chandigarh International Airport on Wednesday morning after she arrived from Bangkok with 146 gm of gold worth Rs 4.11 lakh. This is the third incident this month when the Customs managed to foil the gold smuggling bids at the airport.
Sources said that a women, a resident of Ludhiana who runs a boutique arrived with three more people at the airport. Customs officials said that she was initially carrying a gold biscuit, but as soon she arrived, she went to the washroom where she converted it to a bangle and wore it.
“It was intercepted by the Customs department when she passed through the green channel. She was allowed to go after imposing a fine of Rs 1.73 lakh,” said a custom official, adding that the Assistant Commissioner level officer can release the gold by imposing a fine in the case worth Rs 5 lakh, and the same was done in this case as well.
Sources said that the woman initially didn’t reveal that she was carrying gold with her. Custom officials said that a passenger who has not traveled in six months is allowed to wear 40 grams of gold. But sources say that the woman was a frequent traveler. In another incident, a Pataila resident was arrested after over one kilogram of gold worth Rs 30 lakhs was recovered from him after he arrived from a international flight at airport on Jan 12. On January 2, Customs officials had seized 468 gms of gold worth Rs 13.50 lakh from a Delhi resident who arrived at the airport.