Krunal Pandya, who was a part of MI’s successful IPL 2020 campaign was detained at Mumbai airport on Thursday by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) for allegedly trying to bring in undeclared diamond-studded and other luxury watches. A few sources suggest that the Indian Express that Pandya, 29, was stopped on the basis of a tip-off and found to allegedly have in possession two diamond-studded Audemars Piguet and two Rolex models that were not declared to Customs. The total value of the watches is estimated to be about Rs 1 crore, they said.


The all-rounder was questioned for about three hours, after the team arrived around 4.30 pm on a chartered flight, and allowed to leave after the watches were confiscated, sources said. “The case and the watches have been handed over to the Customs unit at the Mumbai airport. The player will have to pay the duty and a fine if he wishes to take possession of the watches,” sources said. DRI officials detained the player along with his wife. Sources said DRI officials, on receiving intelligence, had reached T2 terminal of the airport. If he is found to have violated rules, Pandya would face action under the Customs Act. According to Customs law, a passenger can carry items/goods worth up to R50,000 as free allowance and won’t have to declare at the customs. If a passenger is carrying items of a higher value, they must be declared at customs on arrival, and can attract duty of around 36%. If A passenger caught with goods worth up to R20 lakh without paying duty is fined. If the value of goods range between 20 lakh to 1 Crore Rupee, he is made to pay the fine and arrested, though he is eligible for spot bail against a cash deposit. If the value of goods seized is above R1 crore, the person is arrested and produced before a magistrate to seek judicial custody.


Krunal’s mother, Nalini Pandya had said “I haven’t heard anything about it. I haven’t spoken to him today.” After this was brought to his notice, Krunal admitted that he was unaware of the rules, apologised and even agreed to pay the penalties on the same, a DRI source said. Krunal further assured that he would not repeat the error after which the DRI allowed him to leave, the source added.

By Arvind Krishnan

Cricket writer, statistician and analyst. An unorthodox media student, marketing runs in his blood. Sports Marketer and analyst.