This is one protracted search operation in which the Delhi Police are seeking the assistance of the unlikeliest of aides.
Since the suspect in question is a police officer himself, allegedly involved in a fake immigration racket spread across northern and western India, his counterparts have roped in the absconder's wife to help track him down after a series of unsuccessful raids across three states including Delhi.
"The said officer has been identified as sub-inspector Navin Chand Upadhyay, who was posted at our security wing before being transferred to immigration some months ago. SI Upadhyay, ACIO2 (equivalent to a Delhi Police SI's rank) Chaman Azad who is an Intelligence Bureau (IB) officer and a Jet Airways ground staffer, Manoj Soparwal, were running an immigration racket that was busted on April 2," said a senior police officer.
According to police, the trio used to charge between Rs 25 to Rs 35 lakh to send potential candidates to several destinations in the US and Canada on forged immigration documents.
The racket, police believe, had been in existence at least since early March this year.
"We busted the racket and arrested five of their clients, including three women, on April 2, minutes before they were about to board the said flight. Azad and Soparwal were arrested on the spot - but Upadhyay, who had been tipped-off by his wife, got away. After much persuasion, she's now helping us locate him instead," the officer said.
On Saturday, police arrested Sanjay Bhai Patel from Gujarat's Mehsana for his involvement in the racket and is now in the process of nabbing two Mumbai-based travel agents for the same.