Narcotics intercepted at Mundra sponsored by the LeT: NIA in charge sheet

In its third charge sheet filed in the Mundra port drug haul case, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) alleged on Monday that Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operatives received funds from the sale of Afghan heroin trafficked into India via the maritime channel in order to finance terrorist activities.

Harpreet Singh alias Kabir Talwar, owner of popular Delhi nightclubs including White Club (previously known as Playboy), Jazbaa and RSVP, who was arrested in August of last year, travelled to Dubai on multiple occasions to exploit commercial trade routes to smuggle Afghan heroin into India and used his companies to receive the contraband and remittances, according to the agency.

On Monday, the federal agency filed its second additional charge sheet against 22 persons and organisations, including Pakistan-occupied Kashmir-based operative Muhammad Iqbal Awan, Dubai-based member of the drug smuggling gang Vityesh Koser alias Raju Dubai, and Ahmedabad-based Kabir Talwar.

The NIA filed its first charge sheet in the case against 16 other defendants on March 14, and its second charge sheet against nine defendants on August 29, 2017.

The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) intercepted and seized 2,988 kg of Afghan heroin at Mundra Port on September 13, 2021.

“Over the course of the inquiry, it was discovered that foreign-based narcotic merchants were operating an organised network of syndicate members for importing heroin-laden consignments into Indian ports (Mundra, Kolkata) and delivering them to various warehouses in New Delhi. The network of Afghan nationals based in India was responsible for contracting these warehouses and processing/extracting/distributing the heroin after it arrived in New Delhi. The investigation revealed that Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operatives received cash from the sale of heroin to continue terrorist activities in India, according to a statement released by the NIA on Monday.

Prince Sharma, another Delhi businessman who was arrested alongside Talwar last year; Ishwinder Singh from Panipat (Haryana); Jasbir Singh from Tilak Nagar in Delhi; Afghan nationals Rah Matullah Kakar (an Afghan residing in South Delhi), Shaheenshah Zaheer (an Afghan residing in Noida), Faridoon Amani alias Javed Amani (Kabul), Abdul Salam Noorzai (Kabul), Mo

The CIA stated that there was an organised criminal conspiracy to import heroin from Afghanistan to India using international commerce lines.

“When researching forward and backward links of the crime, a well-oiled network of agents involved in the import, facilitation, and transit of drug-laden shipments was identified. In addition, it has been established that shipments were imported through several fake/shell import proprietorship corporations set up in India by multiple defendants,” the spokeswoman stated.

The spokesperson referred to Talwar as the “primary accused” and stated that he visited Dubai on many times and willingly participated in the scheme to use the commercial sea-route for the import of drugs in order to transport commercial amounts of heroin into India.

Talwar’s clubs and businesses in Delhi, “established… in the names of his employees, relatives, and friends,” were used for the importation of drugs, forbidden commodities, and the receipt of remittances in the form of lawful goods in exchange for his role in the smuggling cartel. Around a dozen such companies have been uncovered and investigated, including M/s Magent India, which has been charged. This company imported and received heroin disguised as semi-processed talc stone from Afghanistan to India, according to the spokeswoman.

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