Author: Paul Ploumis22 Apr 2014 Last updated at 08:27:53 GMT
MUMBAI (Scrap Monster): The latest statistics released on Monday by the Customs Department indicates that illegally smuggled gold worth Rs.76.65 crore was seized from three International airports in the Southern Indian state of Kerala. The total weight of seized gold amounted to 219 kilograms during the period from April 2013 to 20th April this year.
As per Customs records, Kozhikode International Airport topped the table with gold weighing 134 kilograms seized during this period. The worth of seized gold amounts to nearly Rs.46.90 crores. In second place was Cochin International Airport. Smuggled gold weighing 64 kilograms worth Rs.22.40 crores was seized from the airport during the period. Also, 21 kilograms of gold worth Rs.7.35 crores was seized from Thiruvananthapuram International Airport.
The Customs data also indicates that 156 kilograms of gold was brought into the country during the same one-year period by remitting duties. The duty against these official imports generated revenue of nearly 5 crores. Kozhikode International Airport collected Rs.3.32 crore, constituting bulk of the revenue. It was followed by Cochin with Rs 1.12 crores and Thiruvananthapuram with Rs.55.57 lakhs.
Of late, gold smuggling from Gulf countries has been on the rise. Customs sleuths had recently intensified checking at these International Airports, following incidents where airline staff was found involved in acts of gold smuggling. The gold smuggling networks in India are believed to pay off airline staff across various carriers to bring in gold from Gulf countries.
According to Customs Department, the seized gold constitutes only one-tenth of the actual gold smuggled into the country.