'Counterfeiting & smuggling a major threat to economy'

Counterfeiting & smuggling a major threat to economy

MYSORE: Anupam Agarwal, Director, Karnataka Police Academy, on Friday said that counterfeiting and smuggling has developed a substantial threat to the economy and there is conclusive evidence of the increasing involvement of terror organizations in funding such illicit trade activities. There are adequate laws available, but enforcement of the laws makes the role of police officers even more important in the fight against counterfeiters and smugglers, he added.

Addressing the 'Capacity Building Programme for Police Officers on Prevention of Counterfeiting and Smuggling' organised by FICCI's Committee Against Smuggling and Counterfeiting Activities Destroying the Economy (CASCADE), Mr Agarwal said, "To meet the vision of our PM of making Indian economy, a $5 trillion economy, all stakeholders like FICCI, Police and industry needs to work together more closely."

Agarwal said that the loss of revenue to the government due to counterfeiting and smuggling has a direct impact on spending on welfare measures such as health care and education. "Police Department is the primary law enforcement agency in our country and should play a significant role in ensuring that proactive and collaborative actions are taken against illicit players to protect the consumer's health, life and safety," he added.

While giving an overview on Socio-Economic Impact of Counterfeiting and Smuggling, Mr Deep Chand, Advisor, FICCI CASCADE and Former Special Commissioner of Police, New Delhi highlighted that lack of stringent enforcement, weak surveillance and weak regulatory framework are the main factors responsible for illicit trade. He said that the wider social, investment and criminal enforcement costs due to smuggling and counterfeiting could touch $ 4.2 trillion by 2022, putting at risk 5.4 million legitimate jobs.

Pradeep Dixit, Vice President - Industry Affairs, ITC Ltd. stated that India is the 4th largest and fastest growing market for smuggling of illegal cigarettes, which calls for heightened awareness and sensitization of people in the society.

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