KOCHI: The seizure of three bottles of liquor sent from Bengaluru via Speed Post, which came to light after rodents made a hole in the parcel at the office of India Post, will be probed by a team under Excise circle inspector. Excise officials have identified the person who sent the liquor and who was to receive it in Kochi.
According to Excise Deputy Commissioner T A Ashok Kumar, an officer of Circle Inspector rank has been assigned to investigate the case. “As we have slapped non-bailable offence under Section 53 of Abkari Act, the case will be probed by an Excise Circle Inspector. The investigation has begun and we have traced the person who sent the parcel from Bengaluru and the person who was to receive it in Kochi. We have informed them about the case. The address and contact details of the duo submitted as part of sending courier was taken from the postal authorities,” he said.
An Excise official said that both accused persons were friends. With liquor outlets closed in Kerala, they decided to send liquor via Speed Post. “We spoke to the person who sent it from Bengaluru. We will record the statement of a person who was supposed to receive the parcel in Kochi soon. As it is a non-bailable offence that attracts a fine of Rs 1 lakh and imprisonment of 10 years, the arrest will be recorded. We are checking if similar consignments were sent before,” an official said.
Ashok said it was for the first time that liquor smuggling using Speed Post was detected in Kerala. “The seizure of contraband especially narcotics substances sent through other courier services is common. Speed Post is not used for such illegal activities as there is a high risk of detection,” he said.