LoC trade: PaK authorities arrest 5 over heroin smuggling

The contraband item was concealed in two of the 22 rolls, he said.

Tariq Naqash
Muzaffarabad, Publish Date: Sep 20 2017 12:11AM | Updated Date: Sep 20 2017 12:11AM
LoC trade: PaK authorities arrest 5 over heroin smugglingFile Photo

Authorities in Pakistan-administered Kashmir on Tuesday arrested five persons associated with intra-Kashmir trade for alleged attempt to smuggle drugs to India-administered Kashmir from Chakothi-Uri crossing point.

According to Major (retired) Tahir Kazmi, Trade Facilitation Officer (TFO) at Chakothi terminal, they grew suspicious during the manual scanning of a truck (AJKC 5089), and finally recovered 352 packets of heroin, weighing 51.7 kilograms.

The contraband item was concealed in two of the 22 rolls, he said.

Kazmi told this correspondent that after recovery of heroin from first roll, he instantly called his seniors – Brig (retired) Tahir Hameed Mallick and Col (retired) Shahid, Director General and Director, respectively, of Cross-LoC Travel and Trade Authority (TATA), as well as Deputy Commissioner Abdul Hameed Kiani and Senior Superintendent of Police Riaz Haider Bukhari of Jhelum valley district to the terminal and the ensuing developments took place in their presence.

According to him, apparently the mercantile goods were dispatched by one Sajjad Ahmed Zargar alias Majid Kashmiri from Rawalpindi, but he did not himself accompany the vehicle to Chakothi.

At Chakothi, Chaudhry Abdul Qayyum facilitated entry of the vehicle from the army check post to the terminal while invoice of goods was made in the name of Muhammad Mutwalli. Both are locals and associated with intra-Kashmir trade.

Israr Ahmed Meer, another local trader whose company was banned from shipping for being dormant for more than six months, facilitated scanning of that truck, Kazmi said.

Police have taken all three into custody as well as vehicle driver Khurshid Khan, a resident of Dhirkot in district Bagh. Khurshid had driven the vehicle from Kohala to Chakothi while his brother Manzoor had brought it from Rawalpindi to Kohala, Kazmi said, adding that Manzoor was also summoned at Chakothi for questioning and later taken into custody. He said that police were also hunting for Majid Kashmiri. Due to this episode, Kazmi said, the trade activity could not take place on Tuesday.

However, he added, trucks would ferry goods to the opposite sides as per routine on Wednesday.