News APP

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  gplay  » News » Fishing boat with 173 kg hashish worth Rs 60 cr seized off Guj coast, 5 held

Fishing boat with 173 kg hashish worth Rs 60 cr seized off Guj coast, 5 held

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Senjo M R
Last updated on: April 29, 2024 22:30 IST
Get Rediff News in your Inbox:

The Indian Coast Guard, the Gujarat Anti Terrorist Squad and the Narcotics Control Bureau in a joint operation seized 173 kilograms hashish from an Indian fishing boat and detained two crew members, an official said on Monday.

IMAGE: Indian Coast Guard personnel with arrested boat crew and 173 kg of drugs off Gujarat coast, April 29, 2024. Photograph: Courtesy Indian Coast Guard on X

The vessel was apprehended on Sunday afternoon and the crew members have been identified as Mangesh Tukaram Aarote aka Sahu and Haridas Kulal aka Puri, both residents of Maharashtra, the official said.

Aarote and Kulal as well as the seized hashish have been brought to Porbandar jetty and handed over to Gujarat ATS and NCB (Operations), Delhi, for further questioning, he said.


On Sunday itself, various Gujarat ATS teams fanned out and arrested Kailash Sanap from Pune in Maharashtra, Datta Andhale (Maharashtra resident) from Dwarka and Ali Asghar alias Arif Bidana from Mandvi in Kutch district, taking the number of persons held in the case to five, a release from the ATS said.

As per preliminary probe, the five were in touch with a Pakistan-based drug syndicate led by 'drug lord' Fida and the contraband was delivered to a crew member off the coast of Pasni in the neighbouring country, Gujarat Director General of Police Vikas Sahay said.

An ATS official recently received a tip off about drug smuggling through the sea route.

To execute their plans, they hired an Indian fishing boat in the intervening night of April 22-23 and it was to come back on April 27-28 to the Gujarat coast, after which the accused planned to transport the drugs to other parts of the country, an ATS release said.

Based on this information, a joint team of Indian Coast Guard and Gujarat ATS launched an operation from Porbandar on board ICGS Sajag and intercepted the boat in the high seas on Sunday afternoon.

The search of the boat led to the recovery of 173 packets of hashish worth Rs 60 crore from Aarote and Kulal, said the release.

"To take delivery of hashish off the coast of Pakistan, Sanap, Andhale and Aarote had come to Dwarka and Mandvi to purchase a boat. Unable to purchase a fishing boat in their name, they hired a boat belonging to a local from Salaya," the release said.

"On the night April 22, in the pretence of going for fishing, Aarote and Kulal had taken the boat and its crew to the sea after which they had overpowered the crew members and asked them to take the boat to a predetermined position off Pasni in Pakistan," it added.

Aarote was in constant contact with Sanap over Thuraya satellite phone and was acting on the latter's instructions, and the accused had taken delivery of the hashish along with fuel and rations from a Pakistani speed boat at a location which was nearly 110 nautical miles off Pasni, Pakistan, it said.

After taking delivery of the contraband, they were on the way back to a predetermined point, which was nearly 60 nautical miles off Dwarka, the release said.

"As per their plan, Kailash Sanap had instructed Andhale to offload the contraband at a deserted stretch on the Dwarka coast and a receiver sent by Sanap was supposed to take the delivery of the contraband from there," it said.

An offence under Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act is being registered at ATS police station in Ahmedabad and further probe into the incident is underway, the release said.

"Based on specific and credible intelligence inputs from the ATS, the ICG strategically deployed its ships and aircraft, ensuring that the boat does not evade the sea-air coordinated surveillance," an ICG release earlier in the day release said.

"The boat was intercepted after proper identification. This operation is the ICG's 12th apprehension in the last three years and a testimony of coordination and success of joint efforts of ICG and ATS Gujarat for appropriate response to drug trafficking through seas," it said.

The seizure comes a day after the ICG, ATS and Narcotics Control Bureau, in a joint operation, recovered heroin worth Rs 600 crore from a Pakistani boat with 14 crew members.

Get Rediff News in your Inbox:
Source: PTI  -  Edited By: Senjo M R© Copyright 2024 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.
India Votes 2024

India Votes 2024