The Indian Coast Guard has seized a Sri Lankan fishing vessel carrying 300 kilograms of heroin and firearms and arrested six Sri Lankans during a raid carried out in the waters off the coast of Vizhinjam in Kerala, South India.
According to Indian media, on the intelligence received by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) of India and the Indian Coast Guard, the fishing vessel Ravihansi was seized on Thursday, 25 March.
All the six Sri Lankan crew members – L.Y. Nandana, H.K.G.B. Deshapriya, A.H.S. Gunasekara, S.A. Senarath, T. Ranasingha and D. Nissanka – were taken into custody on Saturday and they have been remanded to judicial custody.
The NCB in a statement on Tuesday has said that 300 kg and 323 grams of heroin, five AK-47 rifles and 1,000 rounds of nine-millimetre ammunition were recovered from the fishing vessel. The heroin was found concealed inside the water tank of the vessel in 301 packets.
The vessel has been brought to Vizhinjam harbour and NCB Chennai Zonal Unit has taken over the custody of the boat. Several incriminating documents were also seized from the occupants of the vessel, the NCB said.
“The image of a flying horse was found on all the heroin packets, which is a usual practice of drug trafficking syndicates to brand their drugs. Further, investigations so far indicate that an unknown vessel carried the heroin and arms consignment from Chabahar Port, Iran and handed over the same to Sri Lankan fishing boat Ravihansi in the high seas near Lakshadweep,” Hindustan Times quoting the NCB statement reported.