Police bust fake passport racket facilitating Bangladeshis to Arab nations
New Delhi: Delhi police today claimed to have busted a major international human trafficking racket that was allegedly facilitating Rohingya Muslims and Bangladeshi nationals to West Asian countries, including Saudi Arabia.
The police are now investigating whether the Bangladeshi nationals were being trafficked to Arab nations to join the Islamic State and other militant organisations.
Six persons were arrested in connection with the case. Those arrested have been identified as Shaukat Ali, Suleman, Saddam Hussain, Amit Bodh Jha aka Bitoo and Mohammad Ibne Sultan.
According to the police, they arrested individuals were involved in trafficking Bangladeshi nationals to Saudi Arabia after procuring Indian passports and visas in Delhi for the last two years.
“Shaukat Ali was the kingpin of the module. He used to get the details of these Bangladeshi nationals from operators in Bangladesh. They would make fake Indian passports on which visa of Saudi Arabia was stamped.
Then the documents were sent to Hafiz Sheikh, a Kolkata-based contact," Delhi Police Special Commissioner (Operations) Sundari Nanda said, shedding light on the modus operandi adopted by the accused. It was the arrest of Hafiz that led to the revelation of the entire racket.
According to the police, Shaukat's nephew Suleman used to collect the forged passports, and money through hawala channels. Saddam then collected these passports from Shaukat and hand them over to Ibne to get the Saudi Arabian visa stamped.
These passports were then handed over to Amit for sending it to the operators in Bangladesh. The group charged Rs.1.5 lakh to Rs.2 lakh for arranging the forged Indian passports, police said.
“Every month they used to send 20 persons on forged Indian passports,” Nanda said, adding, “We have recovered 25 passports of which two are forged.” It is suspected that close to 500 people from Bangladesh have been sent to Arab countries using the same modus operandi in the last two years.
The police further said that Shaukat had links with one Noor-ul-Haq, who was arrested by the Hyderabad Police in September 2015 for his alleged links with the terrorist outfit HuJI. Sheikh was arrested by Kolkata Police on January 7, 2016.