— Dawn
— Dawn

DERA GHAZI KHAN: Large-scale smuggling of Iranian petrol and diesel through the Dera-Quetta road and their illegal storage and sale have made the road as well as residential areas of the city unsafe as fire incidents in the trucks carrying fuel or at the storage sites are common.

Such an incident happened on Saturday too when the Iranian diesel stored in a house near Gaddai caught fire. The firefighters swiftly extinguished the fire and saved the adjacent houses. The house that was being used as a storage facility was completely burnt. Several incidents of burning of trucks transporting smuggled fuel have occurred on roads of the district during the last couple of months, putting lives of motorists and commuters in danger.

It is worth mentioning that a majority of trucks have their extra storage tanks in their body to smuggle the petroleum products from Balochistan into Punjab.

In Dera Ghazi Khan, Iranian petroleum products are being sold illegally without any check and such sale points don’t adopt any mandatory safety measures for fuel sale and storage. There is a mushroom growth of sale points of smuggled Iranian petroleum products in the city.

The smugglers easily cross check posts of the Border Military Police and Punjab Police established on Dera-Quetta road to reach the Dera Ghazi Khan city. They also use motorcycles laden with five to seven cans of fuel also to transport it freely in the city and rest of the district.

Deputy Commissioner Mahr Shahid Zaman Lak said all the authorities concerned were on board to evolve a joint strategy to control smuggling of Iranian fuel. He claimed that the district administration was taking stern action against the mushroom growth of unsafe sale points of fuel running in the whole district.

Published in Dawn, June 4th, 2023

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