Sale of Smuggled Cigarettes up by 60%
The market for smuggled cigarettes in Karachi has seen exponential growth with sales peaking at 60%. Despite the gravity of the situation, the Sindh Health Department and other concerned authorities have yet to comment on the predicament at hand. The government is suffering losses worth billions of rupees due to the unchecked and increasingly robust trade of smuggled cigarettes.
Several regulatory injunctions have been leveled against the buying and selling of illegally obtained cigarettes, all to no avail. Inability to implement these laws has allowed this scourge to grow at an unprecedented rate. Popular brands such as Pine, More, Camel, Davidoff and Mild, which do not feature any warnings for underage smokers, are openly available for sale. Chanti Gali, situated in Kharadar, serves as the hub to this illegal trade.
Smuggled cigarettes are brought to Chanti Gali and from here, are further supplied to various outlets around the city. HTV reporters covering the issue on-site received repeated threats from the shopkeepers. When notified about the situation, the president of the All Karachi Traders’ Association intervened and provided safe passage for HTV reporters to proceed with their footage.