Chandigarh: The Punjab Police has busted a Pakistan-sponsored drugs and illegal arms smuggling racket, arresting four persons, including a BSF constable posted in Samba district of J&K, who played a key role in it.
Foreign-made weapons, including a 9mm Zigana pistol made in Turkey, along with 80 live cartridges etched with Pakistan Ordinance Factory markings, two magazines and two live cartridges of a 12-bore gun, and Rs 32.30 lakh “drug proceeds” were recovered from the constable, named Sumit Kumar alias Noni.
Punjab DGP Dinkar Gupta said Sumit is a resident of Gurdaspur. The DGP also gave details about how the police in Jalandhar (Rural) district first arrested Amanpreet Singh of Dhirpur village on 11 July in a murder case, and he went on to disclose that he and his brothers were in touch with one Shah Musa of Pakistan, for smuggling narcotics and weapons across the international border.
According to the DGP, Amanpreet said he had come into contact with Shah Musa through BSF constable Sumit, who had been lodged in Gurdaspur jail in connection with a murder case. Gupta said the conspiracy to smuggle drugs and weapons from across the border was hatched in Gurdaspur jail, and that Sumit had disclosed his involvement.
In the first instance, he is learnt to have facilitated the entry and delivery of 15 packets of heroin across the border fence, while in the second instance, he was involved in the influx of 25 packets of heroin and a Zigana 9 mm pistol over the border fence where he was deployed.
He kept the pistol for himself after the delivery of heroin to some unidentified persons. Sumit had received Rs 39 lakh for the successful receipt of the drugs and weapons, in two tranches of Rs 15 lakh and Rs 24 lakh.
How the smuggling operation was conducted
DGP Gupta further said investigations carried out so far had revealed that after getting bail in the murder case, Sumit was posted at a guard tower overlooking the international border with Pakistan in Samba sector of Jammu, from where he was constantly in touch with trans-border smugglers who, in turn, are learnt to have been in contact with Shah Musa in Pakistan.
Detailing the module’s modus operandi, Gupta said photos of the drug consignments and weapons which were expected to be received from Pakistan were sent to the constable by the other accused on his mobile phone. Sumit used to send photographs of border fencing, screenshots of his location, border pillar numbers and details of the villages surrounding the area to trans-border smugglers and associates, who used to share the delivery coordinates with the Pakistani smugglers.
The DGP said subsequently, on a pre-decided date and time, a conduit was sent by Pakistani smugglers, usually in the afternoon, to conduct reconnaissance of the location and to establish visual contact with Sumit.
Then, the same night, the Pakistani smugglers used to come at the pre-decided place when Sumit was on shift, after the latter had flashed a torch at them, and throw the drug/weapons consignment over the border fence. Sumit would collect the consignment and hide it in nearby bushes for subsequent retrieval and delivery.
Gupta said that subsequently, during his next shift, which was invariably from 9 am to 12 noon the following day, Sumit used to hand over the consignment not far from his guard tower, according to the directions of his associates.
Further investigations in the case are still going on, DGP Gupta said.