Material found inside goats sent for chemical analysis.
The Yellow Gate Police have valued the consignment seized from MSV Yusufi at Rs 7.5 crore. The estimated worth of the sailing vessel,which is now in custody of the port office,is Rs 50 lakh.
Meanwhile,veterinarians at Sakarbai Dinshaw Petit Hospital for Animals found small pouches of uniform size inside three goats were uniform in size. They said the pouches were probably packed inside a separate thinner polythene envelope. Following a second round of X-rays,shadows of foreign objects were detected in three goats.
The dhow was intercepted off Colaba on April 3. It was transporting 32 goats,450 crates of cigarettes and mobile phone parts to Sri Lanka,according to its manifest.
We found plastic envelopes in the goats abdomens. These contained five pouches with 5-10 grams of an unknown substance. The envelopes had perforated and turned brownish-black due to intestinal fluid. The envelopes are smaller than table tennis balls. The fluid will not affect the nature of the substance; it can be identified at the forensics laboratory, said Dr J C Khanna,dean,Sakarbai Dinshaw Petit Hospital for Animals. It was a major surgery. We operated on the goats for two hours each, he added.
Khanna said the envelopes were mixed in the goats food and ingested. After the first round of X-rays,we detected foreign objects in six goats but three of these were fed and given water regularly and passed the plastic naturally. Twenty-four goats were X-rayed Tuesday,of which 21 were found to be fine. It is possible that the other three had been kept hungry and not given water, he said. The pouches were intact as they were thicker and sealed inside the envelopes.
Usman Ghanchi,the dhows handler,continues to deny having knowledge of contraband inside the goats. Police are awaiting the chemical analysis report of the pouches and their contents. The pouches have been sent to the Kalina Forensic Sciences Laboratory (FSL).
Police said the manifest names Iqbal Hassan Umi,the master of the dhow,as the owner of the cargo. Umi will record his statements before a magistrate under Section 164 of the CrPC.