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Paramilitary forces’ powers to act as Customs officers extended

Paramilitary forces’ powers to act as Customs officers extended

ISLAMABAD: In order to curb smuggling, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has extended the period of empowerment to paramilitary forces to act as Customs officers till June-end next year.

Sources said that initially, the paramilitary forces were given six months from December 1, 2010 to perform functions of Customs officers to prevent illegal movements of goods within Pakistan territory, especially where Customs authorities were unable to perform their duties.

The authorisation period had been extended time to time on the basis of performance. The latest extension was granted till June 30, 2018 through SRO 823(I)/2017.

Officials in Pakistan Customs said the FBR entrusts paramilitary forces, including Pakistan Rangers and Frontier Corps to act as Customs officers within their respective jurisdictions, which are limited within 20 kilometres of the international borders.

The paramilitary forces cannot invoke their Customs officers’ power within municipal limits, Customs areas and stations, ports, borders, international airports and bonded warehouses, sources added.