The Sri Lanka Customs is planning to set up a
Marine Customs Enforcement Unit to combat the smuggling of hard drugs or
narcotics into the country, Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera said. The
statement comes in the wake of series of seizure of drug contraband while being
smuggled into the country.
There has been a suggestion to set up a Marine
Customs Enforcement Unit with boats and special trained personnel. That will
improve the Customs service to a great extent to prevent and control
narcotics coming into the country, Minister Samaraweera was quoted by the Sri
There had been detections/raids of drugs in the
country, but a majority of them were made by other authorities, such as via
sea, and not mainly through the Customs.
After the end of a 30-year war, large hauls of
drugs like 'Kerala ganja' or Indian-grown cannabis had been made, some of which
are entering the country through coastal regions in former war zones.
Sri Lanka has had a sea-based service until
recently to tackle the drug menace. With setting up this unit it will help to
make special raids, Director General of Customs Ms. P. S. M.