BHUBANESWAR: A customs official at Biju Patnaik International Airport here has been accused of demanding and taking bribe from a passenger.
A passenger, Kuppuswamy Nagarajan arrived at the airport with his friends from Bangkok on April 15 night. He was carrying legal gold and also had receipts of the yellow metal which he had purchased from Bangkok. Despite having all the clearance from customs, an official here demanded `5,000 from him towards customs duty for carrying gold. Nagarajan paid the amount and later told his friends that the customs official did not provide any receipt against the amount paid.
Nagarajan and friends had an argument with the official and warned him of lodging a police complaint. Following the argument, the official returned the money. Meanwhile, on receiving allegations regarding collection of bribe, Additional Commissioner, GST and Customs has ordered an inquiry.
“As per preliminary investigation, it seems the passenger was carrying receipt of the gold which he had purchased from Bangkok. An inquiry has been ordered and steps will be taken accordingly,” GST and Customs Additional Commissioner Santosh Mohanty told The Express.
The customs officials of BPIA seized 13.77 kg gold worth `4.46 crore at the airport during the 2018-19 fiscal while being carried illegally.
A person can be arrested if he/she is found to be carrying gold illegally beyond `20 lakh.