In a joint operation, the Border Security Force (BSF) and the customs department seized 23-kg heroin after an encounter with Pakistani smugglers in the Theh Kalan border outpost area (BoP) along the India-Pakistan border.
In a press conference, customs commissioner Captain Sanjay Gehlot and Punjab frontier BSF inspector general Anil Paliwal said, “There was a specific input (from the customs) that Pakistani smugglers would come to the border for supplying narcotics to Indian smugglers. We stepped up vigil on the intervening night of September 17 and 18. Jawans from the customs and the BSF also planned an ambush in the Theh Kalan BoP.”
“Around 1:40 am, the ambush party observed suspicious movement on the other side of the security fence near the international border,” an official said.
“When some men started throwing packets over the fence, BSF troops challenged them. However, they paid no heed and opened fire. BSF troops fired back, but the Pakistani smugglers managed to escape, taking advantage of the darkness and tall growth of paddy crops,” the official added.
“A comprehensive search operation was launched after the encounter and 23 packets of heroin were found from the area,” the BSF IG said, adding that a Pakistani mobile phone set and a SIM card was recovered from near the border security fence. Capt Gehlot said, “The department has its own intelligence wing that regularly gathers inputs regarding the smuggling activities. We will conduct further proceedings in this case under the Customs Act.”
The BSF IG claimed that operational guidelines had been issued to all sectors under the Punjab frontier for strengthening border security and ensuring that the menace of smuggling was checked.