Mar 06, Colombo: Sri Lanka Navy during two separate special operations in the last two days in the northwest has seized over 2200 kilograms of dried turmeric suspected to be smuggled via sea and arrested seven suspects in connection with the incidents.
Special operations conducted by the Sri Lanka Navy in Manalkulam area, Silawathura on Thursday and in Pulachchanai, Norochcholai in the wee hours of Friday led to the seizure of 2217kg of dried turmeric.
Sri Lanka Navy said it has been conducting regular operations to tighten its grip on smuggling via sea routes.
The Northwestern Naval Command during a search carried out in Manalkulam area on March 04 had recovered a stock of dried turmeric from a small dwelling in a cultivation land. The 24 sacks recovered from the site had been stuffed with about 826kg of dried turmeric and the operation also paved the way to apprehend 02 suspects in connection to the incident.
Elsewhere in Pulachchanai, Norochcholai the Navy intercepted a motor car, a small lorry and a motorbike transporting 1,391kg of dried turmeric in 38 sacks. Five (05) suspects involved in the racketeering were also held during this operation. It is suspected that these consignments had been smuggled into the country via sea.
The suspects held in these operations were identified as residents of Silawathura, Palaviya and Wattala, from 31 to 52 years of age.
Meanwhile, the suspects and the stock of dried turmeric held on 04th March were handed over to the Silawathura Police for onward legal action, whereas the accused together with turmeric and vehicles seized Friday were handed over to the Norochcholai Police for legal action.