16 Apr 2014 NEW DELHI (Scrap Monster): The gold smugglers are likely to take sea route to bring in yellow metal into the country following the large scale seizures of smuggled gold at Indian airports, warns Intelligence Bureau (IB). Accordingly, the police in coastal areas are being asked to keep extra vigil to foil any attempt of illegal entry of gold into the country.
The gold bought at cheaper rates in Dubai and Bangkok is flown to neighboring countries such as Nepal, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh, where import rules are more lenient. The smugglers then use land and sea routes to sneak gold into India. According to IB officials, the intensified checking at the border posts following terrorist attacks has forced smugglers to use the sea-route instead. Fishermen are being used as middle-agents for gold smuggling acts.
The IB officials anticipate possibilities of gold sneaking into the country from neighboring countries like Sri Lanka and Bangladesh through fishing boats.
Smuggling groups make use of fishermen as agents by paying them hefty sums of money. As these boats usually go to deep sea for fishing, the transactions are difficult to trace either. Last month, the customs department had foiled an attempt to smuggle gold from Sri Lanka at the coastal belt in the Southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu.
Following the alert issued by the Central Intelligence Agency, the Indian Navy and Coast Guard have decided to intensify patrols at sea routes. The authorities have also decided to beef up security checks across the coastal belt of the country in order to prevent gold smuggling activities.
According to statistics released by India’s Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), the worth of gold seized in India has multiplied by 14 times between FY ’11 and FY ’14. The value of seized gold in FY ’14 has risen to Rs.250 crores when compared with Rs. 17.22 crores in FY ’11.