Ahmedabad: Days after seizing about 3000 kg heroin valued at around Rs 21,000 crore in a shipping consignment that arrived at Gujarat’s Mundra port, the Centre on Wednesday (September 22) said that eight persons including four Afghans and one Uzbek have been arrested in the case so far.
Three Indians have also been arrested including a couple who allegedly ran the firm which had imported the consignment under the guise of “semi-processed talc stones”.
“A total of eight persons including four Afghan nationals, one Uzbek and three Indians have been arrested so far. The arrested Indian nationals include the holder of the Import Export Code (IEC) which was used to import the consignment. He was arrested from Chennai. Investigations are in progress," said a statement by the union finance ministry.
The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has arrested -- from Chennai -- M Sudhakar and his wife Durga Vaishali who allegedly ran Vijayawada-registered Aashi Trading Company which had imported the consignment of ‘talc stones'.
On Monday, a special court for cases under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act in Bhuj remanded the couple in 10-day custody of the DRI.
The Centre said that follow-up operations were carried out in New Delhi, Noida, Chennai, Coimbatore, Ahmedabad, Mandvi, Gandhidham and Vijaywada which “led to recovery of 16.1 kg of heroin from a Godown in Delhi, 10.2 kgs powder suspected to be cocaine and 11 kg of substance suspected to be heroin from a residential place in Noida”.
The DRI had detained two containers on September 13 for examination that had arrived at Mundra Port from Kandhar, Afghanistan via Bandar Abbas, Iran. The containers were declared to contain Semi-processed talc stones.
“Detailed examination of the containers led to the seizure of 2988 kgs of heroin from the two containers on 17.09.2021 and 19.09.21,” the government said.
The drug haul is considered to be one of the biggest in the world with the value of the seized heroin estimated to be Rs 21,000 crore in the international markets.