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Mumbai unit of ATS arrests one person accused of spying for Pakistani intelligence operatives

Updated on: 13 December,2023 07:21 PM IST  |  Mumbai
mid-day online correspondent |

The Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) of Maharashtra police made a significant arrest on Wednesday, detaining a person accused of providing confidential information to intelligence operatives based in Pakistan

Mumbai unit of ATS arrests one person accused of spying for Pakistani intelligence operatives

Representational Picture/iStock

In a significant development, the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) of Maharashtra police apprehended an individual employed at the Naval Dockyard for allegedly sharing information about naval installations with Pakistani intelligence operatives. The accused, in his early 20s and working as a civil apprentice at the dockyard, was arrested on Wednesday, as confirmed by an ATS release.

The ATS revealed that the suspect, during the period from April 2023 to October 2023, maintained communication with two Pakistani intelligence operatives through platforms like WhatsApp and Facebook. In exchange for monetary compensation, he allegedly provided confidential and sensitive details about naval and other critical installations in south Mumbai.

A case has been registered against four individuals, including the two Pakistani operatives, under the Official Secrets Act.

Meanwhile, in an early morning operation on Wednesday, Crime Branch Unit 6 in a strategic operation arrested five individuals accused of being illegal immigration agents facilitating the entry of Bangladeshi immigrants.

The operation follows the recent apprehension of Abu Shahid Abdul Hamid Alimia (23), who was identified as a part of the same module during a Saturday night operation.

An official from Crime Branch Unit 6 told midday online that the operation was initiated in Thane based on information from confidential informants.

“We conducted a strategic operation in Thane on receiving a tip off from our confidential informants. We apprehended 5 individuals who are involved in the Bangladeshi illegal immigrants’ module. They were produced in court of law today (Wednesday) and we have been granted custody. These agents were found with forged Aadhar cards. We are further investigating the case further trying to find out the source of these forged documents.”

He added, “these people acted as agents for illegal Bangladeshi immigrants by sending money to Bangladesh through illegal means and helping people cross the India-Bangladesh border illegally.”

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The five individuals apprehended, Masud Harun Sheikh (26), Bilal Harun Sheikh (31), Rafiq Abid Ali Sheikh alias Abdul Qadri Mandal (51), Raman Siqandar Sheikh (34), and Suman Momin Sheikh (32), were produced in court on Wednesday.

A source from unit 6 crime branch revealed that all five apprehended individuals are illegal immigrants and were residing at Shantinagar Slums, Kalva in Thane. All are residents of Jessore district in Bangladesh.

DCP Raj Tilak Roushan from Detection 1 told midday online that a total of nine individuals have now been arrested in connection with this module.

These individuals not only engaged in illegal immigration but also acted as agents, transferring funds to traffickers in Bangladesh to facilitate cross-border immigration operations, he said. The charges have been extended to include the possession of forged documents, prompting a thorough investigation into whether the arrested individuals were involved in creating these counterfeit documents or solely acted as agents in facilitating illegal border crossings.

Authorities have established links between the apprehended individuals and Bangladesh, where illegal funds were transferred from India. (With inputs from agencies)

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