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August 2, 2012

Airline passenger caught with 32 Shahtoosh shawls, arrested

     New Delhi: Customs officials have arrested an airline passenger after he was found carrying 32 pieces of Shahtoosh Shawls and 70 Pashmina shawls. Umar Bashir Dar was detained after deboarding from Air India flight 924 at the Indira Gandhi International Airport here.. He was intercepted while passing through the Green Channel, said Rajeev Tandon, Commissioner of Customs (I & G), in a statement. The value of these shawls in the international market is estimated to be Rs.1.67 crore. The possession, import or export of Shahtoosh shawls is prohibited under Section 39 of the Wild Life Protection Act, 1972. The same have been seized under section 110 of Customs Act, 1962 read with Section 39 of the Wild Life Protection Act. The shawls were got preliminary examined by the Wild Crime Control Bureau officer who confirmed that these 32 shawls contained Shahtoosh hair fibres. The only way to obtain Shahtoosh is to kill and skin the ‘Chiru’ or Tibetan Antelope, an endangered species as it is listed in Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). In India , if figures in Schedule I of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972.
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