Gold bars weighing 40kg, which had allegedly been smuggled from Bangladesh and were to be sent to Mumbai, were seized from a shop on MG Road, in the Jorasanko area, on Thursday.
The directorate of revenue intelligence (DRI) arrested four men. Three of them — Mohammad Hossain, Maruti Bhimrao and Chetan Palgata — were from Mumbai and had come to receive the consignment, said an officer.
Yasin Anwar Pathan, the fourth accused, works in a plastic goods godown in the city. “It seems Pathan had procured the bars from smugglers. He worked as a carrier,” the officer said.
On Sunday, DRI sleuths had seized 40kg of gold from a car travelling towards the city from Basirhat.
As for Thursday’s seizure, DRI officials said they started zeroing in on Pathan after learning a month ago that he was a carrier for a gold smuggling racket. “The other three accused have said they had visited the city three times before to collect gold consignments,” said an officer.
DRI sources said Calcutta has become a transit point for gold smuggled from Bangladesh. According to custom rules, a person carrying gold bars can be arrested if he/she fails to provide papers to prove he had bought them. “If a person buys gold from anyone without a receipt, he is evading tax.” The rule is same for those carrying inherited gold bars.
A person carrying jewellery worth more than Rs 1 lakh can be arrested if he/she fails to produce purchase papers.
A jewellery dealer carrying silver bars from Liluah to Calcutta jumped out of his car to escape armed carjackers, hitched a bike ride and managed to get one of the attackers arrested.
Sanjay Dighe returned home with silver weighing around 8.5kg and cash untouched.
Dighe left home in his Maruti Omni on Thursday afternoon. He was to hand over the silver to a merchant in Burrabazar. “As we reached the railway overbridge near Liluah, four youths blocked our way. As soon as the driver stopped the car, they pulled out guns and got into the rear seat,” said Dighe, who was seated in the front.
Near MCKV School, Dighe opened the door and jumped out. He spotted a youth riding a two-wheeler and pleaded with him to chase the car. Near Agrasain school, the bike — with Dighe riding pillion — overtook the car and blocked its way. Three youths jumped out.
The fourth was handed over to cops. A single-shot gun and a few rounds of ammunition were seized from him.