The Air-Traffic Control (ATC) at Mumbai airport arrested two persons who were allegedly trying smuggle contraband out of the country late on Sunday. The ATC seized 12 kg of methaqualone,which is used in the manufacture of Mandrax,a party drug. The ATC had to abort the take-off of a Malaysia-bound flight at the Air Intelligence Units (AIU) request.
The operation took place between 11 pm and 1 am. Officials have pegged the value of the seized contraband at Rs 2 crore in the illicit market.
The Malaysia Airlines flight was on the taxiway preparing to take off when the Air Traffic Control stopped the aircraft,a spokesperson at the Mumbai International Airport Ltd said.
We intercepted Nazdeer Ahmed Basha at the check-in counter and found 6 kg of the drug concealed in his hand baggage, a senior AIU official said. The AIU found a second boarding pass with Basha in the name of D Gauthamam. He admitted that the second boarding pass belonged to his accomplice who was already on a flight to Kuala Lumpur. We immediately requested the ATC to stop the flight, the official said,adding that another 6 kg of methaqualone was seized from Gauthamam. Gauthamam is a management graduate and a software engineer,while his father works in the CMs office in Chennai, the official said.
The two were traveling from Chennai to Mumbai and to Malaysia thence.