ISLAMABAD: Model Customs Collectorate Islamabad’s anti-smuggling wing has successfully foiled an attempt to smuggle goods worth millions of rupees.
Cloth of foreign origin, cigarettes and miscellaneous items were on their way from Peshawar to Lahore via the motorway when Customs staff acted on secret information that an attempt will be made to smuggle goods worth millions of rupees in a forty feet container on vehicle No. TKL 132 from Peshawar to Lahore under the patronage of known smuggler Gul Zaman.
The Customs anti-smuggling team led by Superintendents Lai Khan and Zargham Dil in coordination with the Motorway Police intercepted the said vehicle at Kallar Kahar area, arrested four smugglers and took the truck into immediate custody.
While the smuggled goods were being escorted to the Customs state warehouse in Islamabad, a gang of armed men riding eight vehicles armed with sophisticated weapons, opened fire on the Customs convoy near the Islamabad exit in an attempt to liberate the arrested men and take away goods from the custody of Customs staff.
During the attempt a couple of Customs personnel were injured while four were taken hostage by the smugglers. Due to the strong resistance and heavy exchange of fire, the smugglers were forced to let go of three of the customs officials. However, the smugglers were able to kidnap Deputy Superintendent Chaudhry Iftikhar and free one of their accomplices during the armed skirmish.
On arrival of heavy contingents of Islamabad and Rawalpindi police, the armed persons fled the scene. Islamabad Customs have lodged FIRs against the culprits and formally seized the smuggled goods. The Rawalpindi police after lodging a case for abduction are conducting raids to apprehend the culprits.