'Fake notes racket has Pak links'

A day after the Delhi Police seized fake currency worth Rs 2.24 crore, a senior police official said it was a conspiracy hatched in Pakistan to destabilise the economy ahead of the Assembly elections in five states.

“The fake currency was sent by Iqbal Kana from Pakistan in a bid throw the economy into chaos,” said Arun Kampani, Deputy Commissioner of Police.

Zeeshan Khan, a resident of Dabri in south-west Delhi, and Ash Mohammad, a resident of Prabudh Nagar in Uttar Pradesh, were arrested on Thursday in Delhi while ferrying fake currency in two tempos.

The police had initially said that they had seized Rs six crore, but after counting till late night, the amount came down to Rs 2.24 crore.

Police said the main conspirator Iqbal Kana, a resident of Prabudh Nagar in UP, who sneaked into Pakistan and is wanted in several cases by CBI and other investigative agencies, has used his Indian connections to pump in large amount of fake currency.

Police received information for the last two months that Kana was trying to send counterfeit currency.

“We also came to know that Ash Mohammad, a key associate of Kana, and Hassan, a resident of Sitapuri in Dabri, had gone to Pakistan to meet Kana for procuring the consignment,” said Kampani.

Police have sent teams to Bihar, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh and adjoining states to get more information and it came to light that Mohammad is allegedly an associate of Kana.
A special police team managed to track down a tempo loaded with bundles entering Sitapuri on Thursday.

The tempo stopped in front of Zeeshan Khan’s house. One person got down and was arrested by the police team. The goods were also checked and the tempo was found loaded with 19 bundles of cloth.

“Each bundle contained  bales of fabric, wrapped around a cardboard sheet, labeled with different brand labels suggesting that these were packed somewhere in Pakistan. The cardboard sheets in each bale were found heat-pressed to avoid detection,” said Kampani.On opening these, a concealed cavity was noticed where the fake currency was kept.

The notes recovered were similar in appearance and texture with genuine Indian currency — good quality paper and  genuine-looking security features — and were not easily detectable as fakes.

Police said the wrappers seized from the clothes used to conceal the fake currency had the names of five companies — Safari Textiles Mills, Four Star Sidiki Processing Mill, Maharani Collection, Kohinoor Suiting and Usmaan Naiem Fabrics — all based in Faisalabad, Pakistan. The police are searching for more suspects.

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