Fake currency seized, smuggler held near Bangladesh border in Bengal

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Kolkata, Feb 27 (IANS) The BSF has seized fake Indian currency notes (FICNs) with face value exceeding Rs. six lakh and held a man for allegedly trying to smuggle foreign currency in two different operations on the Bangladesh border in West Bengal, an officer said on Saturday.

In the first operation, troopers of the 24 battalion seized Rs.6.5 lakh in fake notes under the Churianantpur border outpost area in Malda district on Friday night.

“Challenged by a BSF team, the miscreants coming from the Bangladesh side of the border managed to escape but we have seized the FICNs,” said a Border Security Force (BSF) officer.

In the second operation, 32-year-old Asharaful was apprehended by the troopers at the Integrated Check Post (ICP) Petrapole in North 24 Parganas and $1,700 seized from him.

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The BSF so far in the year has seized over Rs.57 lakh in FICNs from across the South Bengal frontier and apprehended seven smugglers.

Meanwhile the National Investigation Agency (NIA) constituted Joint Task Force with Bangladesh for prevention of smuggling and circulation of FICNs, has adopted a standard operating procedure (SOP) for enhanced cooperation between the two sides.

The SOP, adopted at the third Indo-Bangladesh Joint Task Force meeting at New Delhi on February 22-23, involves sharing of intelligence inputs and investigative leads between established points of contact, maintaining database on all dimensions of foreign currency notes as well as organising joint training and seminars in both the countries.

Probing several cases of FICN seizures in Bengal, the NIA has arrested several people from across the country including Uttam Kumar Sinha said to be the kingpin of a FICN smuggling network.

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