The Godhra police arrested four persons for allegedly forging sponsorship letters on the basis of which Pakistani nations were getting their Indian visas issued from Indian High Commission in Islamabad. Forged documents being used in the issuance of visa were under the scanner of the Godhra police since last three months and police had filed a case regarding the same in November last year.
Investigations revealed that the accused, Nishar Ahmed Asla Hafiz, Shoeb Ahmed Hazi, Imtiaz Ahmed and Hussain Abdul Hasan were involved in the process of forging sponsorship letters and in some cases, even selling these forged letters to the Pakistani nationals who were interested in visiting Godhra. Police were alarmed of the possibility of forging of documents after the number of Pakistanis visiting Godhra rose sharply in 2014 to 1,803 in 2014 from 877 in 2013.
A sponsor of a Pakistani national based in Godhra has to fill in a certificate with own name and details of the guest, including his/her photograph, how long he/she will stay and the purpose of the visit. The document, once attested by a senior government officer, is sent back to the Pakistani national concerned, who has to then submit it while seeking a visa.
Police said that the four were involved in using forged signatures, stamps, issuance of bogus medical certificates and reproduction of forged documents with the help of photocopies etc. One of the accused Hussain Hasan is a college principal whose unauthorised signatures and stamps were used on forged sponsorship letters. Imtiaz Ahmed Ismael owns a photo studio with photocopy facility. His shop was used to issue forged documents. All four were arrested under sections 464, 473, 120 (B), and 114 of the IPC.
“Our investigation reveal that these four persons were involved in various capacities in forging sponsorship letters that were being couriered to Pakistani nations seeking Indian visas. Pakistani nations interested in visiting their relatives and friends in Godhra were even being sold sponsorship letters for the issuance of Indian Visa,” said Godhra Special Operations Group (SOG) PI, RS Rathod, who is the investigating officer in the case.
Godhra police were alerted of the possibility of the use of fake documents in the issuance of visa to Pakistani nationals late last year after Godhra town saw a sharp jump in the number of Pakistani nationals visiting the town. Acting on a complaint, the then LIB inspector CC Khatana filed a case after scanning documents that were being mailed to the Indian High Commission from Godhra. The police had written to the Indian High Commission to send them samples of documents being submitted to them to aid investigation. One such document had mismatched name and signature of a police officer.