Improve surveillance, tackle smuggling at borders: PM Kakar to authorities

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Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar on Tuesday, directed customs authorities to ensure the implementation of a comprehensive monitoring system at irregular border crossings to tackle smuggling in the country.

During the high-level meeting which saw the premier briefed by the Ministry of Commerce on the proposed plans to enhance export volume and possible steps to tackle the smuggling menace, the prime minister accentuated the need to promote and encourage trade via legal channels.

The huddle also reviewed various procedures and channels of trade under the Afghanistan Transit Trade Agreement.

The development comes as a day earlier, the Pakistan Navy (PN) in a joint intelligence-based operation with the Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) seized 9.5 tonnes of narcotics from a boat.

The confiscated narcotics worth up to $112 million were hidden in secret compartments of a fishing boat that was intercepted by a PN vessel. During the raid, the authorities also seized 10,000 bottles of liquor.

In a separate meeting, PM Kakar while chairing a meeting over matters pertaining to the Petroleum Division, directed authorities to ensure the utilisation of the country’s immense natural resources to its full potential.

Accentuating the significance of the correlation between the development of road infrastructure and access to the natural reserves, the premier also issued directions to curb illegal mining.

During the meeting, the caretaker prime minister was also briefed on measures taken by the Petroleum Division with regard to enhancing oil and gas production in the country.

Meanwhile last month, customs officials had thwarted an attempt to smuggle foreign liquor worth over Rs80 million from Port Qasim into Karachi. The illegal liquor was disguised as diplomatic cargo, Geo News reported on August 27.

Similarly, Sindh Rangers had also apprehended six Indian smugglers inside Pakistani territory between July 29 to August 3, an official statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said.

Four of the smugglers — namely Gurmeej son of Guldeep Singh, Shinder Singh son of Bhora Singh, Juginder Singh son of Thakur Singh, and Vishal son of Jagga — belonged to Ferozpur, whereas Rattan Pal Singh son of Mahinder Singh and Garvender Singh son of Mukhtiar Singh belonged to Jalandhar and Ludhiana respectively, the military’s media wing said.

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