Navy deserter caught at the Mumbai airport

Nov 01, 2015, 07:05 IST | Neha LM Tripathi

Electrical radio artificer fled from the Navy in 2006 to become a film producer

Vishal Rana’s dream of making it big in the film industry went bust when he was caught on October 29 at the city’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport.

The 36-year-old was labelled a ‘deserter’ after he fled from the Indian Navy to join the film industry and was stopped by immigration officers.

Rana was headed to Dubai by Emirates’ flight EK 501, scheduled to depart at 4.05 am. Immigration officers stopped him when he checked in at 1.45 am, and noticed a Line of Control (LOC) issued against him by the Naval police.

According to a top official close to the case, Rana was working as an electrical radio artificer at INS Darshak in Visakhapatnam. In 2006, when he deserted his posting. “A notice was issued in order to track him as he was subject to naval laws.

We have been searching for him since 2006,” explained a Navy officer. Rana continued to be undercover for long, despite another notice issued by the Navy in 2014. “According to inputs received by the investigating officers, Rana was residing in Mumbai, apparently at his father-in-law’s residence,” added the officer.

A team of eight naval officers, headed by Lieutenant Commander Ramesh Kumar, reached the airport after intimation from the immigration officers. On Thursday afternoon, Rana was taken into Navy custody at Colaba. He is is kept at a detention centre there, Commander Rahul Sinha, Chief (PRO) Defence said. He will be taken for trial to Visakhapatnam.

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