Staff Reporter Collector Preventive (Karachi) Muhammad Saqif Saeed briefed the media about the anti-smuggling operations carried out during the past three months in which targets assigned by the Federal Board of Revenue were exceeded and smuggled goods worth Rs1.14 billion were seized. The briefing was held by the Model Customs Collectorate of Preventive in the Keamari area. The collector said that during the investigation of major seizures, certain new facts have come to the fore and it is important that these facts are shared with everyone so that public opinion can be built against the mafia involved. The media was informed that since the department is tightening the noose around the people involved in the smuggling of goods, the latter have changed their strategy. Saeed said that in the past, smugglers were only transporting smuggled goods from border areas into cities. However, he added, as the anti-smuggling operations intensified, the smugglers changed their strategy and involved themselves with supplying smuggled goods directly to the markets. Recent facts have, however, revealed that after changing their strategy, these elements have now acquired warehouses within the city, especially in busy market areas, where the smuggled goods are dumped and later supplied to different areas, said the collector. The facilitators of these people are highly influential and, therefore, resort to physically resisting anti-smuggling operations and thereby challenging the writ of the state, he added. Saeed made it clear that in accordance with the directions of Prime Minister Imran Khan, the Customs has been given the role of a lead agency for anti-smuggling. He said provincial and divisional level task forces have been established in which there is representation of all the relevant law enforcement agencies so that comprehensive and concerted efforts can be made against the menace of smuggling, which is hurting the local industry in particular and the economy in general. The collector also made it clear that those who challenge the writ of the state or are found involved in facilitating and abetting smugglers will be tackled without fear or favour. The seized smuggled goods included narcotics, betel nuts, Gutka, cigarettes, fabrics, banned medicines, auto parts, diesel, liquor, fireworks, mobile phones, tyres and blankets.