One of the eight smugglers on board the Pakistani boat seized with 232 kilograms of heroin by the Coast Guard holds a health card of United Arab Emirates, indicating he might be residing there, while others were found having currencies of Pakistan. The health card has further confirmed the suspicion that the eight could have been carrying heroin from Dubai for delivery in Thailand.
The fate of the eight ‘smugglers’ is however hanging in balance as the Porbandar police refused to register a case in their jurisdiction. The eight men who were arrested in the morning of April 21 are in the custody of agencies without a case registered against them either by Coast Guard or Gujarat Police.
- Crew of seized Pakistan ship received directions over satellite phones, says Police
- Heroin boat had no fixed route chart, say police
- Pak boat probe: One Dubai resident onboard
- Coast Guard hands over Pak boat crew to Porbandar police
- Have sought details of boat incident from India: Pakistan
- Two suspicious ‘Pak’ boats with heroin seized near Gujarat, 8 held
The men who were under “custody” of Coast Guard from April 21 were handed over to Special Operations Group on April 22 for “interrogation.” However, the men were returned to Coast Guard on April 23 night without registration of any complaint. They were later produced in a Porbandar court on Friday to decide the registration of the FIR. However, the court directed the Coast Guard to approach the appropriate court.
The Coast Guard has now contacted its headquarters in Mumbai to decide on the registration of a case under the NDPS Act against the ‘smugglers’ at Yellow Gate police station in Mumbai.
Superintendent of Police, Porbandar, G A Pandya told The Indian Express, “They were in custody with us but we handed them over to Coast Guard on April 23 night. The laws under NDPS Act apply in this case but the operation happened in international waters beyond any jurisdiction”.
The Coast Guard officials remain tight-lipped about the second boat and the connection of these eight smugglers with it. Apparently the said second boat, was let to go since it had nothing in it.