Petroleum smuggling rampant in Rautahat.

Gas station operators in Rautahat district headquarters Gaur and elsewhere in the district are reportedly involved in smuggling petroleum products across the border, much to the chagrin of customers, for whom it is hard to get fuel in required quantity long after the unofficial blockade ended.

There are three petrol stations, namely Shushil, Gupta and Aslam petrol pumps in Gaur Municipality.

Though the pumps receive fuel once every week without fail, much to everyone’s surprise, they run out of stock the very next day.

Sources say the government’s recent directive to gas stations not to dispense petroleum products in jerry cans and other receptacles hasn’t done anything to stop the illegal practice. Though as per the rule, petrol stations are allowed to only directly fuel vehicles, a fuel smuggling racket is said to be operating hand-in-gloves with the petrol station operators.

“Every day large amount of petro-products is smuggled to India in jerry cans loaded in auto-rickshaws. The trade has flourished of late with no one, not even the local police, willing to do anything to stop them,” lamented a local youth Pusparaj Yadav, adding that petro-products are dearer by 15 rupees in the Indian market.