Chennai: Cargo movement in Chennai port has come to a standstill as the raids by the DRI and Customs sleuths continued for the third day today. It is also learnt the CBI Director Alok Kumar Verma has arrived in the city in connection with the raids.
The officials began the searches following a tip-off about large consignments of fake Indian currency notes reaching the shores of various ports, including Chennai, on Saturday last.
While initially it was only the flow of the outbound vehicles that were affected because of the checking, now the inbound lorries are also suffering as they are not allowed inside.
“Since the vehicles inside are not allowed to leave the premises, new lorries can not be allowed inside,” officials said.
The piling up of lorries outside the port has also led to traffic congestion in the area. Traders complained that the officials are not allowing even the checked vehicles to leave the premises
resulting in setback to the business.
“The imported cargo, mainly containing metals and dhal, can be delayed. But fish and fruits, which constitute a major portion of the export cargo, cannot be made to wait as they will rot,” the traders said. Sources revealed that close to 12,000 containers are being scrutinised, which is the reason for the delay.
“With two unloading areas in the Chennai port, the officials are finding it difficult to narrow down on the container which conceals the ‘Shipment’ they are looking for,” sources revealed.
The checking began on Saturday with only 25 officials, Since there were more number of containers, 100 officials joined them yesterday.
Though there was no findings made during the search, the officials are not willing to take any chances and are continuing the search. Sources revealed that it is not the Chennai port that is subjected to the scrutiny but searches are being conducted in multiple locations in the country.
TRAFFIC JAM IN SEA TOO
The checking has not only led to traffic jam on road but in sea also. It is learnt that four ships are waiting in the harbour to unload the cargo. Similar raids were also conducted in the cargo holds in Thiruvanmiyur, Ponneri, Manali and Maduravoyal.