Published On: Thu, Sep 17th, 2015

Can’t disclose quantity of gold lying in vaults: Customs

New Delhi: The Customs department has denied to disclose the quantity and value of gold, seized from smugglers, lying in its vaults at Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) here citing “security reasons”.

Najib Shah Chairman of  CBEC,   the nodal national agency responsible for administering Customs, Central Excise, Service Tax .

Najib Shah Chairman of CBEC, the nodal national agency responsible for administering Customs, Central Excise, Service Tax .

The quantity and value of gold cannot be disclosed for “security reasons”, it said in reply to an RTI query.

The yellow metal, in bullion or jewellery, seized from smugglers is kept in secure vaults inside the airport terminals.

The response assumes significance as there have been continuous cases of thefts of gold worth crores of rupees from these vaults.

A total of 23.6 kg of gold has been missing from the customs vault. FIRs have been registered in these cases by Delhi Police. The missing gold is worth about Rs 6.2 crore, as per the latest market price.

“Departmental enquiry at highest level has been initiated in the said cases,” it said without giving further details.

The cases of mysterious disappearance of gold from the customs secure vaults are being regularly reported. The role of customs officials posted there has also come under scrutiny of the police and senior departmental officials, official sources said.

In June, the customs officials had lodged an FIR with the police to report disappearance of 11 kg of gold, worth Rs 2.92 crore, from its vault.

Another FIR was filed last year to probe the similar case. In most of the cases, gold is being replaced with yellow-colour metal, they said.

PTI

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