Bengaluru: The Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies special squads and the police are on high alert as the smuggling of Public Distribution Scheme (PDS) rice is on an increase in the State.
In the latest incident of smuggling, 11,440 kg rice was seized by the Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies officials on the Chennai- Bengaluru highway on Friday night.
The department had received information that rice was being smuggled from Kancheepuram district into Karnataka and the special squad and police chased the national permit lorry, which was used for transporting the smuggled rice. Kancheepuram District police seized the vehicle after a chase and arrested three men.
The Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation has been arresting people who are indulging in smuggling of rice and other PDS commodities to other neighbouring states like Karnataka, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh.
The Tamil Nadu Police have also intensified patrolling in the border check posts to prevent the smuggling of rice.
A senior official of the Tamil Nadu civil supplies told IANS that rice is distributed for free for BPL card holders and this rice is being bought by middlemen and smuggled out into other states.
The Kerala Police had intercepted a national permit truck in Walayar that was smuggling rice into the state from Tamil Nadu. On questioning the driver and helper in the truck, it was found that the rice was meant for some mills in central Kerala. This rice will be converted into branded products and sold at a higher price.
With an increase in smuggling of rice from Tamil Nadu, the concerned district police have posted special police teams to manage the check posts.