PESHAWAR: Customs authorities have claimed that they have seized smuggled contraband items (narcotics) at Pak-Afghan sharing Torkham border, valuing over Rs3.5 billion since December 19 and arrested five culprits, including four Afghan nationals and one Pakistani.


This was revealed by Collector Customs Appraisement Peshawar Amjad ur Rehman while addressing a news conference here at Model Customs Collectorate Peshawar.


The senior official said special teams have been constituted to thwart smuggling attempts and take prompt actions by deployment at Customs Station Torkham border and confiscated contraband items (narcotics) over worth Rs3.5billion since December 19 last year.


Geographically, Pakistan is a linear country with a richness of diverse and striking landscapes. It borders with four countries: China to the northeast; Afghanistan to the west and northwest; Iran to the west; and India to the east.


Sources said since the fall of Kabul and formation of interim government in Afghanistan, the smuggling of contraband items (narcotics) have increased via the Torkham border.


Pakistan has always pursued a zero tolerance policy for all types and forms of drugs. That approach has significantly contributed in a visible reduction in drug production in the country over the past several years.


Collector Customs said during the last two weeks, narcotics of different nature and variety of 1000 grams, including 524kg hashish, 281kg ice, and 255Kg heroin had been seized during action at Torkham border.


The senior official informed the customs authorities that they have confiscated more than five vehicles and arrested five culprits including four Afghan nationals and one Pakistani, which were allegedly involved in smuggling of narcotics.


Furthermore, he said five FIRs have been lodged against four above-mentioned accused who were arrested on the spot and further interrogation has been launched in this regard.


Accompanied by Additional Collector Appraisement Customs Peshawar Shahid Jan, Additional Collector Muhammad Tayyab and other senior officials, the collector said joint teams had seized 30kg each heroin at the border region.


He added the narcotics were concealed in tankers, filters and beneath the floor.


Amjad ur Rehman said the narcotics were smuggled for students of educational institutions.


During the actions, the collector said the customs teams deployed at Customs Station Torkham, had seized illegal and foreign weapons/arms.


He said strict checking and vigilance was conducted of vehicles crossing the Pak-Afghan sharing border.


He said actions were being carried out with close coordination of relevant departments and authorities. He added most of the actions conducted on secret tip off.


Source: Business Recorder – Jan 09, 2022