Cross-border gold smuggling increases after India demonetisation

Dhaka,  Sat,  19 August 2017
Published : 08 Aug 2017, 22:43:28
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Cross-border gold smuggling increases after India demonetisation

KOLKATA, Aug 08: Gold has overtaken counterfeit currency as the favoured commodity for smuggling along the India-Bangladesh border after demonetisation.

Sources said smuggling of counterfeit currency through the Benapole- Petrapole crossing has reduced post demonetisation as the security features of the new currency notes are hard to match.

However, security agencies along the Indo-Bangladesh border have now noticed an increase in gold smuggled, according to a report published on news18.com.

The gold makes its way into India from Dubai via Bangladesh.

The gold then goes to hubs like Bowbazar and Burrabazar in Kolkata, where is then turned into ornaments and re-routed to other parts of the world.

Some of the gold is kept in the country as reserve as it is a safer method to stash black money.

There is a huge demand for gold in India.

They pay 3000 Bangaldeshi taka per tola of gold, which is about 11.66 gm. of gold worth 45,000 Taka (Rs 35,545) is sold in India for 48,000 Taka (Rs 37,915). (One Rupee = 1.27 Taka)

Bangladeshi security agencies have noticed that cattle smuggled from India to Bangladesh are often traded with the smuggled gold. The modus operandi keeps changing to avoid detection.

The gold is smuggled through youngsters and sometimes elderly people and the gold is hidden in the soles of footwear, in sweet packets, in strips around suitcases and mobile phones.

The small time smugglers get caught but not the big operators.

Around five thousand Bangladeshis travel to India daily through the Benapole-Petrapole border crossing.

In the last two years, the customs in Bangladesh and Border Guards Bangladesh together have seized around 20 kg of gold bars from 25 people.
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