130 tonnes of goods not cleared in Kozhikode airport for 3 months


M P Suryadas

In a surprise inspection conducted in March by the Air Intelligence Wing of the Customs, half a kilogram of gold was found in such a bag. Following this, the Customs decided to check all baggage weighing more than 100 kilograms and to make strict all inspections.

Kozhikode: Nearly 130 tonnes of goods remain uncleared in the cargo section of Kozhikode airport since March awaiting the permission of the Customs. Majority of the goods are perishable items including dates, sweets and powdered milk. Many items were sent in a way they reach the households before Eid, but all are stuck in the strict action of the Customs, it is alleged.

Meanwhile, the Customs explained that they took strict action as some people imported food items on large scale for business purpose using the passport of Gulf returnees. Many sent goods utilising the unaccompanied baggage facility which allows people returning from Gulf after staying there for at least six months to send their luggage as cargo.

Normally, this luggage is handed over to the owners without any delay after charging 38.5 percent tax. In a surprise inspection conducted in March by the Air Intelligence Wing of the Customs, half a kilogram of gold was found in such a bag. Following this, the Customs decided to check all baggage weighing more than 100 kilograms and to make strict the inspections.

The legally allowed items for household uses are permitted to be brought as unaccompanied baggage. But the customs found out that many people are bringing upto 40-50 kilograms of sweets, pistachio, dates and similar items for business purposes.

Though selling imported food items requires special permission as per the Food Safety and Standards Act, people are not following it. The inspection and rules were made stricter in order to stop sale of products without ensuring quality, the Customs explained.

Majority of the people send goods for wedding, Eid or other celebrations at home. Though some people smuggle goods misusing this facility, the act of torturing all expats should be stopped, the NRIs said.

Some expats with low financial background are bringing goods as unaccompanied baggage, but they receive it after paying 38.5 percent tax. When the authorities refuse to hand over the goods even after hearing them, the food items are perishing in the cargo section.

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