New Delhi: Customs officials at the Indira Gandhi International airport arrested two men who were trying to smuggle into the country gold worth over Rs 75 lakh that was concealed inside a papaya. The smuggling attempt was unearthed when customs sleuths intercepted the duo at the green channel following a tipoff.
The passengers, who held Indian passports, arrived at terminal 3 of the IGI airport on Sunday from Bangkok by flight TG315, when they were asked to cooperate for a thorough checking by the customs officials at the green channel.
According to the officials, the owner of the recovered gold gave the fruit to his accomplice, also travelling in the same flight, and asked him to avoid the red channel and instead pass through the green channel.
"Detailed examination of their baggage and person was conducted which resulted in the recovery of gold weighing 2.62 kgs concealed in the papaya fruit carried in a hand bag having value of Rs 75.81 lakh (having market value of Rs 77.65 lakh)," said Sanjay Mangal, commissioner of customs, IGI airport.
Officials said that the duo is being questioned about where they were supposed to deliver the smuggled gold. They also said that involvement of a bigger syndicate in the smuggling is also being probed.
"The recovered gold was seized under Section 110 of the Customs Act, 1962 and both the passengers were arrested in terms of Section 104 of the Customs Act, 1962," said commissioner Mangal.