The railways were the conventional mode of transport of precious diamonds from Surat to Mumbai and other parts of the country for many years. This carried great risks of theft by dacoits and delays in reaching the customers, causing loss to the industry.
With the new development, 30 percent of diamond parcels are to be delivered to Mumbai through the cargo service of Spice Jet from Surat. There are 12 angadia firms in the city which send diamonds worth worth over Rs 500 crore every night to Mumbai by Gujarat Mail and Saurashtra Express.
These courier boys will have transit invoice known as 'Janghad' for each of the diamond parcels mentioning the value of diamonds and the names and addresses of the sender and the receiver. Since there are no restrictions on carrying of valuables domestically, there should be no issues of any kind.
Natu Patel, owner of an angadia firm in Mahidharpura, told TOI, "Around 30 per cent of polished diamond deliveries would now be made using air cargo facilities. We have to depend on train service as there is no air cargo service between Surat and Mumbai. If SpiceJet starts the facility then it will not take much time for the angadias to divert from trains to flights. Sending precious diamond parcels in flight is very safe and it reaches on time."
SD Sharma, airport director, told TOI, "Surat is the hub for diamond and textile business. Cargo services approved by AAI will go a long way in giving a boost to trade. Now, the airline company has to seek permission from the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security for security arrangements on ground and in the aircraft and install X-Ray scanning machine at the airport. Cargo from Surat will now be able to be delivered where ever SpiceJet is operating.”