Railway police have seized a total of 10 tonnes of rice at the Jolarpettai railway station in the last one month, officials said. The latest seizure was made on Friday, when ration rice weighing around 1 tonne and packed in small bags was found. The bags were placed under passenger seats in a Bengaluru-bound express train.
Railway police personnel swiftly acted after they received a tip-off about possible smuggling on the train. In all the smuggling cases, no arrests followed as the culprits escaped from the spot on seeing police. If authorities do not detect the rice, it is picked up at designated stations in either Karnataka or Andhra Pradesh, two states where there is a big trade involving smuggled PDS rice, officials said.
“Since eligible card holders do not avail their monthly quota on time, some salesmen try to pass over the rice to smugglers. Though such a transaction is reflected on consumer smart cards, the former does not always raise the issue with authorities,” an official told DTNext, explaining how instances of PDS rice smuggling continue.
The official also explained another tactic which involves the purchase of rice from card holders by paying them amounts which are more than the government price. The smugglers then polish the rice and sell it off as quality rice in the regular market, he said.
- Smuggling of PDS rice through trains on Chennai - Bengaluru continues
- Railway police have seized a total of 10 tonnes of PDS rice at Jolarpettai railway station in the last one month
- Officials say culprits often flee due to fear of getting caught, abandoning the smuggled rice