QUETTA: FC Baluchistan officials seized 22 trucks and buses carrying smuggled goods worth millions of rupees during a patrolling operation in the katcha area of Quetta. The smuggled goods included solar panels, betel nut, cigarettes and other items that were illegally imported. The case was then handed over to Quetta Customs.
The seizure sparked protests from some of the smugglers, who pelted stones at the official vehicles and tried to block the roads. Assistant Collector Quetta Haseeb Hasan warned that legal action will be taken against the protesters, as no one is above the law. He also said that anyone who has the documentary evidence of legal import and possession of these goods can approach the Customs staff for the release of their goods.
He was addressing a press conference at the Customs House, where he was accompanied by Superintendent Operation Ahad Durrani, Superintendent Appraisement Quetta and PRO Ata Muhammad. He said that the seizure was part of the ongoing anti-smuggling campaign launched by the Chief Collector Baluchistan Abdul Qadir Memon and Collector Quetta Muhammad Ismail.
He revealed that the seized vehicles were specially modified for smuggling purposes, as they had removed the seats to create more space for the smuggled goods. He said that the smugglers had resorted to using the katcha area routes to avoid the check posts of Customs and FC, but the Customs officials were vigilant and coordinated with the law enforcement and security agencies to curb the movement of smuggled goods.
He said that despite the shortage of resources, Quetta Customs was making progress in its drive against smuggling, which is harmful for the national economy and the local industry. He appealed to the public to cooperate with the Customs authorities and report any suspicious activity related to smuggling.