Fake Indian currency racket unearthed in Nepal

July 9th, 2010 - 5:38 pm ICT by IANS  

By Sudeshna Sarkar
Kathmandu, July 9 (IANS) Nepal’s police have unearthed yet another fake Indian currency racket in Nepal with the arrest of three men, including an Indian and a Bangladeshi.

Mohammad Rafiq, a 58-year-old Bangladeshi citizen, led police to his accomplices who were arrested Thursday along with a cache of Rs.3 million in fake Indian 1,000 and 500 rupee currency notes.

Rafiq had arrived in Kathmandu Thursday by Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE.

Police trailed him to Kirtipur town on the outskirts of Kathmandu valley where they also arrested a 30-year-old Indian from Motihari in Bihar, Arun Kumar Gupta, and Nepali national Ranjan Maharjan, police spokesman Yadav Raj Khanal told IANS.

In the past, most couriers flying in to Kathmandu with fake Indian currency arrived from Pakistan and were Pakistani citizens.

However, after flights from Pakistan were put on scanner, the fake money is entering Nepal through Bangladesh, the Middle East and even Sri Lanka.

From Kathmandu, it is sent to India through the 1,800km open border Nepal shares with the southern neighbour and the racket has seen an increase in syndicates employing Pakistanis, Bangladeshis, Nepalis and Indians.

Though police had a break in January when they arrested one of the kingpins in Nepal, former communist minister Salim Miyan Ansari’s son Yunus Ansari, the volume of the trade has not decreased, creating a serious security concern for India.

The prevention of the fake Indian currency racket has topped the agenda of the Nepal visits of all senior Indian officials this year, from External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna to Home Secretary G.K. Pillai.

(Sudeshna Sarkar can be contacted at sudeshna.s@ians.in)

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