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Airport Customs seizes peacock feathers, gold
A man from Ramanathapuram, who was smuggling peacock feathers concealed inside a bundle of flowers to Sri Lanka, was nabbed by Customs officials at the airport on Thursday. The man, Muthukani (36), was detained.
At 3.30 am on Thursday, as they were checking passengers who were about to board the flight to Colombo, the officers found Muthukani carried a huge parcel claiming to be flowers. They opened in on suspicion and found peacock feathers were hidden inside. Muthukani did not have documents for carrying the feathers, and hence the 18 kg feathers worth Rs 1 lakh was seized.
Meanwhile on Wednesday, the officers seized gold worth Rs 46.5 lakh from a passenger who arrived here from Ahmadabad. They had received information that gold was being smuggled from Sri Lanka on Wednesday, leading to close monitoring of passengers of all flights coming from Lanka.
Meanwhile, Customs received a call that the smuggler had hidden the gold underneath the seat and got down from the flight that departed to Ahmadabad as a domestic flight. The informer added that a passenger has booked ticket from Ahmadabad to Chennai on the same flight seat.
After the flight from Ahmadabad landed, the Customs officers checked the baggage of a 38-year-old passenger, a native of Gujarat, and found him carrying 12 gold bars weighing about 1.4 kg, worth Rs 46.5 lakh. They are now on the lookout for the passenger who placed the gold under the seat of the flight from Colombo.
3 AI flights cancelled
Three Air India flights to Port Blair, Tiruchy and Delhi were cancelled, reportedly due to administrative problem. The passengers were later taken to the destinations on other flights. The officials cited administrative problem as the reason for the cancellation of the flights. However, airport sources said that there were not enough pilots and cabin crew for operating the flights.