Police have recovered gold, weighing nearly around 65 kg from a godown at Burrabazar area on Saturday and arrested 12 persons for their alleged involvement in a gold smuggling racket.
Acting on a tip-off, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) raided the godown and seized around 350 gold biscuits. According to a senior official of the DRI, the sum of the total quantity of gold seized from the godown would be around Rs 19 crore.
It may be mentioned that it is the biggest gold seizure in the city of the recent past. There were some businessmen from Burrabazar and a few Myanmar nationals among the twelve persons arrested in this connection so far. Some others who were also arrested on the charges of gold smuggling are from Manipur. The investigating officials said that there were a few women among those who were arrested in this connection. The accused were remanded in judicial custody up to August 24 after being produced before Bankshall Court on Saturday.
It was learnt that the accused used to smuggle outside the country through various borders mainly in the North-east. The racket has been operational for quite some time now. The investigating officers have specific information that those involved in the racket often used to come to the city from outside the state and book hotels here.
Senior officials of the DRI said that a gold racket has been operational along the Myanmar- Manipur border. After interrogating the accused, the officials of the DRI came to know about the involvement of some other Kolkata-based businessmen in this racket. They are conducting raids at various places to nab the other accused involved in gold smuggling.
The DRI has started a detailed investigation into the incident to know the names of the people who might have been involved in the racket.