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‘Sleeper cells’: Pakistan’s way of smuggling drugs into India

According to a statement obtained by CNN-News18 from Indian security services, Pakistan is leveraging its connections to form drug sleeper squads and smuggle narcotics into India in talc consignments. Pakistan is exploiting its geographical location in the Golden Crescent for drug trafficking, and its weak border with Afghanistan acts as a significant transit channel for the substances, according to the report.

The Golden Crescent is a major source of illegal opium cultivation in Asia. This area, located at the crossroads of Central, South, and Western Asia, encompasses the mountainous outskirts of Afghanistan and Pakistan and extends into eastern Iran. According to the letter, 40% of Afghan narcotics transit Pakistan before reaching the worldwide market.

‘Drugs from Afghanistan enter the country through the Torkham border crossing in Ghulam Khan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, and are transported to Lahore and Faisalabad. They are subsequently transferred by commercial boats to Karachi and Gwadar,’ according to the memo. The Balochistan drug network extends via Chaman, Noshki, Chagaghi, Dalbandeen, Panjgor, Turbat, Gawadar, and Jeewani.

According to reports, drug smuggling is a well-oiled system operated and funded by Afghanistan, and its distribution network is handled by Pakistan-based sleeper cells in India. These sleeper groups are mostly made up of Sikhs and Muslims with contacts in Dubai, Lahore, and Karachi. According to the message, they not only organize imports into India but also for customs clearance and subsequent distribution.

Once it has been dispersed around the country, they collect the money and keep a portion of it for terrorist actions, while the balance is returned through hawala channels. The cell forges papers such as goods and services tax invoices, custom clearance certificates, and corporate records. The cells plan warehouses and retail in big cities.

On September 13, 2021, 3,000 kilos of heroin were captured in Gujarat’s Mundra port. On December 19, 2021, heroin worth Rs 400 crore was recovered in the Indian seas off the Gujarat coast. On December 26, 2021, a large amount of heroin was confiscated in Ferozepur, Punjab. More than ten containers declared as talc at Mundra Port has yet to be opened, but the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has not ruled out the existence of narcotics in these containers.

These drug dealers set up an Indian corporation in their name to import talc and narcotics. It’s referred to as semi-processed talc stones. These firms allow them to utilize their company for Benami stone importation and heroin smuggling. According to reports, they also sign all paperwork pertaining to the import, customs clearance, and sale of semi-processed talc stones to a fictional customer in India. They authorize their company’s bank account to move money from India to Afghanistan in order to legitimize their operation.

According to intelligence sources, the Pakistan army is under pressure to produce for a variety of reasons. According to insiders, Pakistan is experiencing a financial crisis as a result of the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) crackdown on terror financing. While Pakistan’s participation in this operation is minor, they are able to take a large percentage of the profits, which they may use to support their terror programs in India, according to sources. According to insiders, they are utilizing anti-India forces to further their cause, although most are ignorant that their firm is importing medicines.


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