7 kg heroin seized from Canada-bound consignment

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Amritsar, Sep 11 (UNI) Sleuths of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) seized seven kg heroin from a consignment of religious literature which was bound for Canada.

The seizure was made at Ludhiana from the truck of a reputed courier company which was carrying the consignment to Delhi. The drug was found in 70 small packets, each weighing 100 gram.

The DRI team, led by Joint Director Dheeraj Rastogi, intercepted the truck carrying religious literature in the form of CDs and books belonging to the Amritsar-based CJ Multi Media Company owned by M/S Jeewan Singh, Chattar Singh, the oldest private printing house of Punjab.

The printing house had been involved in the printing of Sikh religious literature, including the Guru Granth Sahib and had a retail outlet outside the Clock Tower entrance to the Golden Temple.

However, the owners stopped printing of the Guru Granth Sahib after the Punjab government brought an ordinance and later passed a Bill in the state Assembly in March this year, banning the printing and publishing or selling of the scripture be private printing houses or firms. The scripture is now only printed, published and distributed by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandik Committee (SGPC).

Mr Rastogi while confirming the seizure said thereafter a raid was conducted on the premises of the printing house. The DRI sleuths rounded up one of the proprietors of the printing house, Vicky and his cousin for questioning.

The printing house had been at loggerheads with the Akal Takht for the last couple of years after a former Takht Jathedar Bhai Ranjit Singh held them guilty of violating the Sikh traditions while printing, publishing and distributing the holy scripture.

Harbhajan Singh, another proprietor of the firm claimed that they had nothing to do with smuggling of heroin, which had been loaded on the truck carrying their consignment at Phagwara. The DRI was still investigating the matter and so far no arrests had been made.

Meanwhile, Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) condemned the incident and said the Akal Takht should take action against the printing house as the seizure of the heroin from the consignment of religious literature and CDs was a serious matter. He pointed out that this firm had been at the centre of controversies in the past.

UNI XC-HS SW CS1910

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