An Afghan national was one of the two persons who were arrested Saturday by the Gujarat Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) in connection with the last month's seizure of 100 kg heroin from a boat off the Porbandar coast.
"Interrogation of the nine Iranian nationals and technical analysis revealed that the consignment was to be received by an Indian fishing boat, and further to be brought to the Indian coast," the ATS stated in a release.
Ahmedzai was tasked with carrying the consignment to Delhi and hand it over to Kunni, who was supposed to take it to Chennai and Mallpuram, from where it would have been smuggled outside India from various ports and airports, it said.
"This was his third visit to India. He was involved in heroin smuggling in the past as well. Ahmedzai was instructed by one Haji Nadar, also a resident of Afghanistan, to contact Kunni and hand over the consignment to him, for which he was paid Rs 8 lakh," the ATS said.
"Interrogation of the Iranian nationals revealed that one Hamid Malik had given them this consignment to be brought to India. Badruddinn Shaikh, who is a merchant from Aurangabad and whose name was disclosed in the information received by the ATS, has been brought to the ATS for questioning," it said.
As per the agency, Kunni was supposed to take the heroin in small consignments to Chennai and Kasargod for smuggling it outside the country.
The heroin syndicate originated from Pakistan, where opium obtained from Afghanistan was being converted into heroin, it added.
It further said the Pakistani syndicate was forced to find new routes to smuggle heroin outside that country because of increased vigil by a Combined Task Force-150 (a multi-national coalition naval task force) in the North Arabian Sea and Horn of Africa area.
"Further, due to surplus production of opium in the Taliban-controlled areas of Afghanistan, the supply has increased from Pakistan. It (the syndicate) was exploring the coast of Gujarat to smuggle heroin in India, and recent seizures of 100 kg and 5 kg heroin in Gujarat reflects these efforts by the syndicate," the ATS stated.