Published On : Mon, Nov 19th, 2018

Railways being used to smuggle banned materials

Nagpur: Transportation of goods by Railways is considered cheaper, easy and safe compared to that by roadways. But this medium of transportation is also used for smuggling, thanks to the nexus between lease holders and contractors and security agencies. This can be witnessed at Nagpur Railway Station, where smuggling of banned goods and articles is going on openly through parcel and luggage services. It is very difficult to believe that the Railway Protection Force (RPF) and other security agencies have no knowledge about these illegal activities.

Khur parcels from Kolkata
Sources said that smuggling of goat legs (commonly known as khur) is done at large scale at Nagpur station. Nagpur has a huge population of non-vegetarians, who relish on khur. But the local supply of khur is less than the demand and therefore it is smuggled from Kolkata to the Nagpur market. However, khur parcels are illegally brought in Railways in the name of fish or meat.

Illegal transport of banned items
As per Railway rules, stinking material cannot be booked as parcel. Animal skins and khur are particularly banned from being transported through Railways. These items can be booked for parcel only when they are completely dried and odorless. But, due to negligence by officials, these items are packed with salt to reduce its odor and then parceled through Railways. Apart from this, dried veins of cow are also smuggled out from Nagpur in large quantity.

The non-action of RPF
The Nagpur RPF had made headlines when it had seized foreign-made liquor worth Rs 1.75 crores from GT Express and Tamil Nadu Express on 30 September 2016. Though the seized material was billed and its taxes were paid, the lease holder from Delhi was transporting it without informing it to the Parcel department and the RPF. Following action by RPF in the case, the license of the lease holder was cancelled. The question is that when RPF can take such action against liquor transport, why they can’t action against illegal transportation of animal skins, meat and khur?

Smuggling of cigarettes
Sources said that smuggling of cigarettes is also being done in huge quantity. Transportation of cigarettes is banned in Railways. However, cigarettes are being transported in the boxes of readymade clothes almost every day.

CIB, SIB in deep slumber
Alike Armed Forces and Police, the RPF also has intelligence and investigation agencies named as CIB and SIB, which are responsible for collecting information on illegal transportation of banned items in Railways also to seize such material by raiding the consignments. But no such action was ever taken at Nagpur Railway Station. This has obviously encouraged the lease holders to continue their illegal transportation.