ASO Preventive books owner of steel company for smuggling betel nuts

KARACHI: Anti Smuggling Organization (ASO) of MCC Preventive has booked Mohammad Shoib Arshad owner of M/s City Steel UAE Mills, Mohammad Arshad of M/s A.F Enterprises and others for smuggling of contraband betel nuts through gross mis-declaration in the garb of waste and cast iron scrap.

Anti-smuggling Organization received a tip off to the effect that a huge quantity of betel Nuts would be smuggled in the garb of waste and scrap Iron from MCC Port Qasim, Karachi. Eventually, it was known that two containers earlier cleared from the MCC Port Qasim are being shifted at Korangi area, Karachi containing smuggled foreign origin Betel Nuts imported in the garb of Iron Scrap.

In pursuance of the said information, the staff of ASO under the supervision of SPS/ASO constituted a team and rushed towards the spotted area and found said two containers loaded on the vehicles were moving near Shan Chowrangi, Korani Road, Karachi, which were signaled to stop. The drivers of vehicles produced loading program Equipment Interchange Receipt showing the consignment of 14 containers including these two containers which were cleared from MCC Port Qasim.

As there existed discreet information of impugned betel nuts, therefore cursory search was carried out which revealed the presence of Gunny Bags containing Betel Nuts in both the containers. As such the said containers loaded on the vehicles were taken into custody along with both the drivers. Meanwhile both the drivers informed to Customs team that they loaded these containers from the plot of M/s. Bismillah Cargo Service, a Private Yard. They also informed that at the time of loading, further 05 containers of identical nature were also lying there.

On the pointing of these drivers, the Customs team approached the open yard of M/s. Bismillah Cargo Service and found only two containers. The guard at the yard informed that these were there on rental basis. These two containers were also stuffed with betel nuts. Later on in wake of apprehension of betel nuts, endeavors were made to locate the remaining missing containers, and two more containers were apprehended from the yard of M/s M. Younas & Brothers in Hawksbay.

Preliminary investigations found the above consignment comprised of 14 containers arrived from UAE through vessel namely Prosper. The GD was filed by M/s City Steel UAE Mills through agent M/s A.F Enterprises and got it cleared using green channel facility at MCC Port Qasim.

ASO Preventive has recovered another container out of the said consignment.  Collector Preventive Dr. Iftikhar appreciated Superintendent Khalid Tabassum, SPOs Tariq Mehmood, Mohammad Tayyab Khan, Sardar Yusuf, Preventive Officer Ameer Haider, sepoy Shmaraiz.

It may be mentioned that one 40-ft containers contains 26 tons of betel nuts which cost $1500/container from Indonesia for primary quality goods while lower quality goods cost $11/container.

Prior to the stopping of clearance, betel nut was sold at Rs360/kg in the local market which now has reached Rs2200/kg. on the other hand the smugglers are bringing low quality goods, which are being sold at Rs1600/kg

Meanwhile, MCC Port Qasim Collector Javed Chaudry has directed Additional Collector Yaseen Murtaza, Principal Appraiser Shahid Rizvi, Appraising Officers Anwer Zeb and Insaram Rabbani to tighten vigilance on consignments coming from Jebel Ali.

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