Saturday, September 18, 2021

Cross-border fake passport racket busted by IGI airport police

In a major operation, the Indira Gandhi International airport police has busted a cross-border racket involving Bangladeshi nationals, and arrested six accused who were preparing forged Indian passports and immigration stamps.

What is worrisome for the security agencies is that the racket involving foreign nationals had its tentacles spread across the national capital and other states like West Bengal and across the border.

The accused identified persons from Nepal and Bangladesh who were keen to go to foreign countries, and call them to India on medical visa. They then arranged fake documents by fraudulently obtaining Indian passports for them with help of other co-agents in lieu of large amounts of money. Several immigration stamps were used to create fake travel history.

 The case highlights the persistent threat by fake travel agencies, a grim reminder of the modus operandi used by 26/11 accused David Headley and his accomplice Tahawwur Rana during the Mumbai attacks.

A case under several sections of IPC and Foreigners Act has been registered and the IGI police is alert to the possibility of a much larger ring operating in the capital.

The six arrested include Bangladeshi nationals Fozil Rabbi Shipon, 22; Akhtauzzaman Talukder, 54; and Sahidul Sekh; and Indian nationals Vibhor Saini and Fahim Khan from Delhi, and Saurabh Ghosh from West Bengal.

Vikram Porwal, DCP, IGI airport, said the racket was exposed on September 11, when amid tight vigil at the airport, a passenger Sahidul Sekh and two others were intercepted by the CISF when they were intending to board Qatar Airways flight to Doha. On checking their documents, they were found to be fake and a case was registered by the IGI police.

17/09/21 Namrata Biji Ahuja/The Week

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