An immigration officer and an airline official were among six persons arrested here for allegedly facilitating travel of passengers on forged documents, police said on Monday.
Immigration Officer Chaman Azhar and airline commercial staffer Manoj Satpal besides four passengers were apprehended on April one after an airline staff and a security supervisor detected the fraud, a senior police official said.
The airline staff had gone to the boarding gate after their duty at the check-in counter on April 1 night to check the passports of transit passengers before boarding. During the exercise, the security supervisor noticed that the passport of a passenger Anisha Rahimbhai Mardeja, who was travelling to Toronto, bore the security sticker.
"The supervisor felt that the passport had not been checked by the airline staff at the time of check-in. As per procedure, after checking the passport of each and every passenger travelling in our flight, we write the name, passport number and destination on our sheet and then put the security sticker on the passport. On the sticker, the date, last four digits of the passport number and initials are mentioned," he said in his complaint.
The passport and visa of the woman passenger was allegedly found forged.
During questioning, the woman told the staff that her real name was Nazma Maredia.
It came to light during initial inquiries that Satpal was allegedly involved in the racket. When confronted, he told them that Azhar used to inform him about the passengers to ensure their clearance.
"Satpal used to contact passengers near Gate No 7, collect their passports and then hand them over to him at the staff parking lot at the instance of Azhar. The officer would endorse the passports with fake immigration stamps, after which Satpal would return the passports to the passengers and guide them to the international flight through the domestic flight channel," a senior police official said.
Satpal allegedly took Rs 50,000 per passenger and had helped eight such passengers.
"The clearance of three other passengers -- Firdosh Rahimbhai Maredia, Marcus Salvador Dias and Bhawana Marcus --was handled by Satpal on April one," the official said.
A case was registered and all the six were arrested.
Nazma told police that she hailed from Mumbai and had paid Rs 25 lakh to an agent, Rajubhai, a resident of Delhi, to arrange her travel documents.