Saturday, April 7, 2012

India plans to send troops inside Bangladesh

After successfully extracting series of one-sided benefit from the current ruling party in Bangladesh, policymakers in New Delhi has now stepped into its next phase of plan of putting pressure on the government of Sheikh Hasina in allowing Indian troops to enter Bangladesh territory for starting joint operations against terrorists, insurgents, militants and criminal elements. This hidden agenda of the Indian government became exposed when Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh's Special Envoy Satinder K Lamba said on April 5 that terrorists and insurgents continue to operate from Bangladesh, despite the government's efforts to contain them.

"There's a need to sustain the current levels of cooperation to jointly eradicate the menace of insurgency, terrorism and militancy from our soil," he said, while delivering the keynote address at the Fourth India-Bangladesh Security Dialogue, organised by the Observer Research Foundation.

Lamba said it was well-known that terrorists, insurgents, militants and criminal elements respect no civilian law and territorial boundaries.

"Some of these groups and their associated agencies continue to have their hideouts and network of fake Indian currency notes in Bangladesh," he said.

He said that India greatly appreciated the efforts of the Bangladesh government in taking actions against such elements operating from that country. Noting that three security-related agreements have already been signed between the two countries, he hoped the Extradition Treaty will be finalised soon to complete the process of putting in place the framework for cooperation on security-related matters.

Lamba said due to the 'porous' nature of the India-Bangladesh border, there has been considerable cross-border criminal activity, including illegal trade in arms and explosives, counterfeit currency, trafficking in narcotics and women and children.

"These problems pose a threat to the social and economic well-being of both India and Bangladesh," he said.

Meanwhile, after the recent seizure of 10 million Indian rupees from Bangladesh by a team of Rapid Action Battalion [RAB] with almost simultaneous bust of fake Indian currency note racket in Nepal, Indian intelligence agencies including Research & Analytical Wing [RAW] is continuing to claim that Pakistan is pumping in counterfeit Indian currency through Southeast Asian countries like Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia rather than the traditional routes of Bangladesh and Dubai.

It said, "As part of the tactical switch, Pakistan is also using nationals of the South-east Asian countries to avoid detection. As always, the plot for India's economic subversion is being executed through Mumbai underworld."

On April 4, 2012, acting on the inputs provided by India, the Nepal Police arrested a Vietnamese woman with fake Indian currency note worth RS 9.8 million at Tribhuwan International Airport in Kathmandu. Later, Indian intelligence agencies claimed "the consignment - neatly stuffed in high-end liquor bottles - was delivered to her at Vietnam by conduits working for Pakistani handlers. The consignment was so smartly concealed that it would have gone unnoticed had it not been for specific information provided by India."

The accused, whose name has been withheld by the agency as investigations are still on, had stuffed the currency notes in liquor bottles and packed them neatly in her check-in baggage. To avoid scrutiny she had paid legitimate duty on the liquor.

Sources within Indian intelligence agencies said the woman took a flight from Vietnam and reached Kathmandu via Bangkok. Her arrest has not only revealed a new modus operandi, but also a new route [Pakistan to Nepal via Vietnam] of pumping fake Indian currency note into India.

The sources said the consignment was routed through Vietnam as traditional fake Indian currency note-pumping routes like Bangladesh and Dubai are always on security agencies' radar for. "There is greater screening of passengers coming via Dubai or Bangladesh. One would generally not suspect a Vietnamese coming from her country to be carrying fake currency," said an Intelligence official.

Indian intelligence agencies said, "Pakistan may be using underworld links to pump in money as several dons from Mumbai are now holed up in various South-east Asian nations. Even Dawood Ibrahim has a wide network of operatives spanning Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. Sitting in Karachi, he controls a major share of over US$ 2.5 million fake Indian currency note racket in India."

The source further said that the notes are of very high quality, and match with other fake currency consignments coming from Pakistan seized earlier.

A senior intelligence official in India said, "Counterfeiters keep reinventing themselves. The racket had deliberately used a woman as a carrier to avoid suspicion. For instance, the Vietnamese woman had stuffed high-end liquor bottles with fake Indian currency note and neatly packed them. She then paid the required duty on it which made it a legitimate consignment. That is why despite the consignment being in her check-in baggage no one in Vietnam or in Bangkok suspected anything amiss with her luggage."

The official added, "Recently agencies busted a racket in which fake currency was concealed in cigarettes. The accused had removed tobacco and rolled notes into the empty space."

It was not clear as to whether the IRS 10 million consignments, which had been recently seized in Bangladesh by RAB were counterfeit or genuine. Crime experts opined that such seizure might have been planned by the Indian intelligence agencies to justify their demand of starting joint operations of the Indian and Bangladeshi soldiers as well as intelligence agencies with the objective of eliminating anti-Indian operatives in Bangladesh.

They said, Indian authorities might be planning to take fullest advantage of current 'friendly' attitude of the government in Dhaka in ultimately establishing presence of Indian forces within Bangladeshi soil.