Indian Coast Guard catches dhow with smuggled cigarettes worth Rs 1cr

Ahmedabad: The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) today intercepted a dhow in the Gulf of Kutch off Gujarat coast with nine persons on board and seized a stock of foreign cigarettes worth Rs one crore.

All those onboard the dhow, named MSV Safina Al Meraj, were Indian nationals. The dhow was taken to Salaya harbour in Jamnagar district, said inspector general Kuldip Singh Sheoran, commander Coast Guard Region (North-West).

The ICG also recovered two Thuraya sets (satellite phones).

"On searching the vessel, the ICG personnel found two cartons of 'David off', each carton containing ten thousand cigarettes, and 50 cartons of Gudang Gadam, which contain 14,400 cigarettes each," said Sheoran.

The search of the vessel was still on with officers of Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) and other agencies taking part.

According to a statement from Defence PRO, intelligence about a suspicious vessel which had sailed from Sharjah was received on June 18, following which the ICG boat 'Sangram' intercepted it today,
despite the rough seas.

The dhow was damaged and water was leaking inside, so it was escorted to Salaya harbour.

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