Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Indian customs officers smash Dh200k watch, says traveller from Dubai

Dubai: Muhammad Ismail just got back to India from a visit to Dubai when he experienced a horrific ordeal at the Karipur International Airport.

He was travelling with a Dh200,000 watch on his wrist — but next thing he knew, his Audemars Piguet was already on a plate, ‘smashed’ in six pieces.

Ismail was then returning home to Bhatkal in Karnataka via Kozhikode after meeting with his brother in Dubai. He was on his way out of the Karipur airport when customs officers allegedly stopped him and asked him to take the watch off.

“They suspected I was trying to smuggle gold by hiding it in the watch,” Ismail said, recalling the ordeal which happened last week after he disembarked from an Air India Express flight.

“Officials took the watch in a room, where they smashed it into pieces using a hammer. When nothing was found, the broken pieces of watch were placed on a plate and returned to me,” he said.

When a shell-shocked Ismail asked officials to return his watch in its original condition, they took it from him and offered a compensation of Dh50,000. Khaleej Times has reached out to India’s Karipur Airport for comment, and a response is awaited.

A case in this regard has also been filed at a police station in Kozhikode and has been escalated to senior customs officials.

10/01/21 Dhanusha Gokulan/Khaleej Times

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