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‘Customs, BSF should check sugar smuggling’

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By Our Reporter

SHILLONG, May 16: Amidst allegations that the Meghalaya government has turned into a mute spectator while rampant smuggling of sugar to Bangladesh through the international borders in Garo Hills continues unchecked, Cabinet Minister and government spokesperson Marcuise N Marak has left it to the Customs and the BSF to check the illegalities.
Reacting to a query about the state government not doing anything to contain illegal smuggling of sugar, Marak said smuggling of sugar should not take place and if the commodity is being smuggled, the BSF and the Customs should check it as they are the appropriate authorities to guard the borders.
According to Marak, Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma had taken steps to ensure that the smuggling of sugar is stopped.
“The chief minister has taken up the matter. We are dependent on the BSF and the Customs since they are the ones who are monitoring the border,” he said.
Marak also denied allegations that the government has turned a blind eye to the illegal trade.
Recently, a concerned citizen of the state had shot off a petition to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) highlighting the illegal export of sugar (both white and refined varieties) through Meghalaya to Bangladesh.
The petitioner stated that Meghalaya has become the hotbed of illegal sugar export and hundreds of truckloads of sugar are exported illegally to Bangladesh via the Gasuapara, Borsora, Cherragaon, Dawki, and Dalu land customs stations. He had claimed that these trucks come from Assam carrying sugar and after making “payments” at all police stations along the way to reach the designated land customs station (LCS) without any documentation.

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