New Delhi, Dec 16: Be careful with your passport. There have been cases of passports and identification thefts and investigations show that it is being used to facilitate the entry of ISI agents into India to carry out espionage activities.
Passport thefts have been on rise and it was only a few years back that there was a data base suggesting the theft of 1,800 passports which included those of foreign nationals as well.
The Border Security Force (BSF) has seized 9 passports along the Indo-Bangladesh border and this has led to the discovery of a major ISI run racket.
These passports were printed in Kolkata, Patna and Jharkhand and were being smuggled into Bangladesh.
From Bangladesh, the passports would be sent to Saudi Arabia where a team of ISI agents would collect the same and infiltrate into India.
The busting of this plot suggests that the ISI would ensure that those agents would use these passports to enter into India and carry out espionage activities.
The investigators are also not ruling out the possibility of some of these passports being printed in Pakistan as well.
The modus operandi:
This modus operandi was discovered when the Border Security Force was checking persons at the India-Bangladesh border.
The BSF personnel seized 9 passports which were stamped with a Saudi Arabia visa. Upon investigation it was found that the passports were prepared in Kolkata, Patna and Jharkhand and were being smuggled into Bangladesh.
It is a widespread racket and very often, these persons manage to hoodwink officials at the passport office. It was also found in some cases that officials in the passport office were hand in glove with these persons and would often clear passports without checking.
The police has also been hot on the trail of an advocate in Mumbai who has been helping agents create documents so that fake passports could be made.
From Bangladesh, some of the passports were to be taken to Saudi Arabia and handed over to those ISI agents who were waiting to enter into India.
It was further discovered that those agents in India would be given prior intimation about the number of persons that the ISI was looking to infiltrate into India.
The names of these persons would also be mentioned so that the passports could be prepared. In some cases it was also found that stolen passports too had been smuggled into Saudi and Bangladesh and later handed over to these agents.