An attempt by a high-profile scrap dealer from Madhya Pradesh to convert the now-defunct Rs 500 and Rs 1000 banknotes into liquid assets worth Rs 50 lakh was busted by the Rajasthan anti-terror squad in Jaipur on Monday.
The Rajasthan ATS team, under the supervision of SP Vikas Kumar, detained Ratlam-based Gaurav Ajmera, his younger sister and his close aide Dilip. Ajmera deals in railway and shipping port scrap and connections in various political parties. He is also a member of the Railway Consultative Committee, Rajasthan ATS sources said.
A thorough frisking of the three, detained from the Mumbai-Jaipur Express at Durgapura (Jaipur) railway station, led the Rajasthan ATS and a government railway police team to the demonetized Rs 500 and Rs 1000 banknotes, totalling Rs 50 lakh. Sustained grilling revealed that the three had brought the defunct currency to Jaipur to convert it into gold jewellery in Jaipur.
“The plot was meticulously planned with the help of Ajmera’s network in Jaipur. The three, who arrived in Jaipur, were carrying fake documents like sales tax bills pertaining to fictitious companies in Kota and Sawai Madhopur districts of Rajasthan to ensure that everything was done sans any hiccup,” Kumar told HT.
With Ratlam being a major commercial centre of Madhya Pradesh and five suspected ISIS operatives having been held from there by the MP police in 2015, the Rajasthan ATS was keeping a constant eye on the movement of people from the district to Rajasthan.
“We acted on an input from our intelligence network dealing with suspected terror financing and detained the three. They have been handed over to the income tax department in Jaipur for further questioning and action,” said Kumar.
The Rajasthan ATS is now zeroing on tracking Ajmera’s network in Jaipur and other parts of Rajasthan.