The Coast Guard on Friday intercepted a country boat near the Mandapam coast and found gold bars weighing about 9 kg, valued at around ₹4.5 crore, in the engine bay in a cloth bag.
According to officials, inputs were received by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) officials in Thoothukudi on Thursday, following which surveillance was increased in the region.
After about 12 hours of surveillance, the Coast Guard personnel intercepted the country boat near Mandapam. A probe revealed that the person, who identified himself as Ameen of Maraikayarpattinam near Mandapam, was in possession of about 9kg of gold.
Based on his confession, the team came to know that the bars were smuggled from Sri Lanka. He had received the gold off the Gulf of Mannar. Four others, who were with the prime suspect on the boat, were also interrogated by the DRI officials. The country boat has been impounded.
The Coast Guard, in a press release, said they have increased surveillance in the region and a number of successful anti-smuggling operations have been undertaken in close coordination with other stakeholders.
The operation reiterated the Coast Guard’s resolve to ensure safe seas in the region through extensive surveillance to monitor suspicious activities. In March, personnel in Mandapam, in a similar operation, seized 15 kg of gold, the release added.