1.87 tonnes of turmeric intended for Sri Lanka seized

Q branch police seized bags of turmeric at Mandapam seashore on Saturday night.  

The Q Branch police team seized 1,875 kg of turmeric from an abandoned country boat near the Mandapam shore in the early hours of Sunday. Police said that following a specific tip-off, a team kept a watch near the designated point since Saturday. However, they were able to spot only an abandoned boat.

A search on the boat indicated that it had stashed 75 bags of turmeric. A senior officer said that of late, the turmeric is in high demand in Sri Lanka due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hence, the agents from towns like Erode procured the material at a cheap price and transported it to the coastal district by road. With surveillance intensified, the boatmen moved over to Thoothukudi or other locations. Since Mandapam was the closest point to reach the international waters, the smugglers came here and moved in the absence of surveillance teams.

With more inputs coming in about from "informers", the officer said that apart from the State police, Central agencies also were monitoring the movements round-the-clock.

It is said that the smugglers received gold in exchange for turmeric at a cheaper price and hence sold them in local markets. The yellow metals, which were 22 carat, were in high demand among the buyers, the officer said.

In the last three months alone, when covid-19 pandemic was at its peak and the curfew was also in force, the movement of turmeric by road remained high. Recently, for about 10 days, there was not much activity as the police were keeping a tight vigil due to the Thevar Jayanthi celebrations, the officer added.

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Printable version | May 8, 2021 1:25:56 PM |

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