PESHAWAR: Director General Excise and Narcotics Control Department, Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has ordered his staff to detain the official private vehicles of Customs department without any cogent reasons, as a retaliatory measure after their involvement in smuggling of vehicles was exposed.
In an Incident Report Inspector Customs Anti-Smuggling Unit (ASU) Mardan noted while on way to official duties in proper Customs uniform, he was signaled to stop at Peshawar Motorway Interchange by the authorities of Excise and Narcotics Control Department, Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Peshawar.
“The staff of the said department demanded about official card, CNIC, and Registration book of the vehicle, which were accordingly provided. But, they denied to accept the required documents and pleaded that few days ago, a non-Customs-paid vehicle driven by Excise official was detained by Ilyas lqbal, Inspector ASU, Kohat and their DG has accordingly directed them to detain the official private vehicles of Customs department without any cogent reasons,” Inspector noted in the Incident Report.
To come out of the deteriorating situation, the staff of Mobile Squad-I was requested to arrive at the spot for the help of the said inspector and to reach a logical conclusion.
Meanwhile, an officer of Excise department intervene in the matter and informed that the issue actually related to Kohat Customs and their official / private vehicles of Customs will not be allowed to pass through the Excise department and would be detained accordingly during their patrolling as per directions of the DG, Excise department.
Sources said the KPK Excise Department was equally involved in the smuggling and transportation of vehicles, and their involvement had been exposed as a Excise official was caught driving a non-custom-paid i.e. vehicle.
A large number of vehicles are smuggled into Pakistan from Afghanistan. Hundreds of such deals are struck every month between customers in Pakistan and Afghan traders across the border. The vehicles are then sneaked into the country and sold at below market prices without payment of duty or customs. State officials say the illegal market causes billions of rupees in loss to the national exchequer annually.
The business of illegal vehicles continues so fearlessly and under the patronage of government departments and political leaders that such traders have now opened showrooms in various parts of the country.