BENGALURU:Some African nationals, particularly Nigerians, obtain visas to India under the pretext of carrying out garment or textile business. However, in reality they carry on a massive cocaine-peddling business in the City.
Certain pockets in the City in North East Bengaluru like Kammanahalli, Banaswadi, Kalyan Nagar, Horamavu and KR Puram are preferred residential locations for the African Community.
According to a top source, what really prevented the government from deporting the foreign nationals is a clever strategy they deploy to stay put here.
“Commit a petty crime in the City and ensure you are caught. You are taken to the judiciary and bail is granted immediately,” he explains.
As per the law, a person who is on bail for a crime committed cannot return to the mother country unless the case is over, the source elaborated.
“The individual now gets a licence to stay put in the country and carry on the peddling for an extended period of time,” he added.
Much planning goes into the entire process, the source added. Elaborating on the modus operandi, he said that as soon as some Africans enter the country, their passport and original documents are kept in safe custody.
“Fake identity papers are procured and these are only shown at the time of arrest in any crime. By the time they are sent to the embassy and verification of the same is obtained, the individual has many months to sell cocaine and get back to their country using the original documents in their possession,” the source said.
Conceding that the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has stumbled upon many such cases, its Zonal Director, Sunil Kumar Sinha, cited one such major case.
“A Sudanese national and a Nigerian national figured among four individuals who were nabbed on June 25, 2014 in connection with ganja peddling,” he said.
“The seizure was 5.32 kgs and had a market value of Rs 1.2 lakh then. The duo got bail shortly,” he added.
On January 2, 2015, three people were arrested for possession of 360 grams of ganja valued at Rs 10,000. “We were taken aback when we saw the same Sudanese and Nigerian individuals along with an Indian involved in this peddling,” Sinha said.
Volunteering additional information on drug peddlers, the Director said that a shocking aspect witnessed recently was the entry of a few African women into the business to assist their partners.
He also said that a powerful drug cartel prevails in Africa and it dealt in Heroin and Cocaine smuggling which fetches high prices internationally. So, Africans naturally took to it.
However, another recent phenomenon is the involvement of some West African gangs peddling ganja within India. They have resorted to it to fund their stay here.
The Cocaine trail
According to NCB, cocaine is trafficked from Mumbai and Goa to Mangaluru and Bengaluru. It is observed that the abuse of cocaine is more among the affluent residents in the city. As per records, most cocaine cases in this state involve African nationals and especially Nigerians. Newer countries have also now got involved in smuggling cocaine into India from Latin American countries like Brazil, Paraguay and Mexico, records reveal.