Even as gold retailers reel under new Reserve Bank of India (RBI) curbs, gold smugglers appear to be gaining ground in India

Gavin Wendt
Gavin Wendt MineLife

Even as gold retailers reel under new Reserve Bank of India (RBI) curbs, gold smugglers appear to be gaining ground in India. The seizure of smuggled gold has surged 365% in the April to June quarter of this financial year, thanks to the incessant restrictions on the precious metal. Around 181 kilos of gold were seized during the first 4 months of 2013/2014, which is almost equal to what was seized in 2009/2010 and 2011/2012 put together. Most of the gold is smuggled from Dubai via Sri Lanka. With airports tightening security, smugglers are now bringing in gold by sea, mostly from the Sri Lankan coast to Tamil Nadu, officers said. The modus operandi ranges from hiding in shoes to taping it to parts of television sets or other electronic items.

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