Indian Navy has seized Rs 3,000 crore worth of smuggled goods from a fishing vessel which was intercepted in the Arabian Sea on Monday.
This come after Indian navy had encountered a fishing vessel with suspicious movements while on surveillance patrol in the Arabian Sea. To investigate the matter further, INS Suvarna's team had conducted a boarding and search operation which led to the seizure of more than 300 kg of narcotic substances.
The initial investigation has revealed that it was a Pakistani fishing boat and the narcotics seized from it were meant for funding terror activities in India, Maldives and Sri Lanka.
According to officials, this is major catch not only in terms of the quantity and cost but also from the perspective of disruption of the illegal narcotic smuggling routes which come from the Makran coast and flow towards the Indian, Maldivian and Sri Lankan destinations.
During the operation, five people identified to be nationals of Sri Lanka, who were in the vessel, have been taken into custody. It is
suspected that the vessel was headed to Indian, Maldivian and Sri Lankan destinations.
The boat, along with its crew, was escorted to the Kochi port in Kerala for further investigation. It is presently docked along the Mattancherryjetty and is under the custody of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB).
After the seizure, the crew and the vessel along with narcotics was handed over by the Navy to NCB. Other investigation agencies have also started a probe into the incident.
Apart from the drug addiction, the plunders of the narcotics trade also feed syndicates involved in terrorism, radicalisation and criminal activities.
Over the past one year, the Indian Coast Guard has seized more than 1.6 tons of narcotics worth approxRs. 5,200 crore.
Last week, in a joint operation with ATS Gujarat, the Coast Guard apprehended a Pakistani boat off Jakhau on the intervening night of 14 and 15 with 30 kg of heroin where eight Pakistani nationals were also arrested on April 13.