Kathmandu, September 20
Despite seizures of undeclared gold almost every day, small-time racketeers continue to attempt to pass the precious yellow metal through Tribhuvan International Airport.
Security personnel separately arrested eight persons with 794 grams of undeclared gold from TIA yesterday. Superintendent of Police Dinesh Raj Mainali, TIA police spokesperson, said Anand Mohan Singh, who arrived here from Bangkok on a Nepal Airlines flight, was arrested in possession of 99 grams gold which he was trying to take along by evading customs.
Similarly, seven others — Binod Baniya, Samir Tamang, Ravi Shrestha, Raj Kumar Acharya, Deep Bahadur Tamang, Manoj Kumar Tamang and Singha Bahadur Tamang — were held with undeclared 695 grams gold. The migrant workers had returned home from Qatar on a Himalaya Air Flight. The seized gold is worth around Rs 3.9 million as per today’s bullion price, SP Mainali said. They have been handed over to the TIA Customs Office.
SP Mainali said they had tried to smuggle the gold in the form of bracelets and chains. Officials claimed that special vigilance had been maintained at TIA. Nepal Police has seized around 160 kilograms of gold in the past one year. Some migrant workers returning to Nepal are being used as gold carriers, who are promised ‘good’ wage. The migrant workers are paid by racketeers from the Gulf via wire after the gold consignment is received by the concerned persons in Nepal.
As racketeers make a profit of around Rs 7,000 per tola gold, they have been luring gullible migrant workers into carrying the precious metal in small consignments, officials said. An oversea returnee is not allowed to carry gold exceeding 50 grams.
A version of this article appears in print on September 21, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.