Gujarat’s anti-terrorism squad (ATS) has been investigating the 30kg heroin seizure. They have reportedly said that the seven Indian crew members who have been arrested were not aware of the delivery point. The instruction was to share location via their Thuraya satellite mobile when they entered Sri Lankan waters.
They had been using a Thuraya phone and had been asked to share the location via a VHF channel once the vessel entered Sri Lankan waters. The bosses, who the crew members know as Khan Sahab, Ghulam, and Imam Bakhsh, did not disclose to who they were supposed to deliver the consignment. The ATS officer looking into the matter has said that Ghulam and Imam Bakhsh are Pakistani citizens.
Before embarking on the journey, the seven seamen had met the three bosses at Imam Bakhsh’s residence in Iran. He added that the three people had promised about 200,000 Saudi on the successful completion of the trip.
When the crew was in the south of Mumbai, they were awaiting further instructions. When heading towards Sri Lankan waters, they received a message to stay in the Indian waters. The bosses then informed that the delivery would happen at Punjab after landing either in Gujarat or Maharashtra.
While the crewmen were waiting for a signal, they stayed in Indian waters for about four days. This is when the ATS received input about the ship and caught the accused in an operation headed by the Indian Coast Guard (IGC).
On further investigation, the ATS officer found that the same crew members had been smuggling heroin to several countries. The accused were produced at a local court by the ATS, which sought 14 days of custodial interrogation. The court has agreed to grant 12 days.