The Delhi Police has been advised to keep an eye on the Capital's bustling wholesale markets to break an international counterfeiter's network that spans "from Karachi to Chandni Chowk". The move comes days after close to Rs 3 crore fake Indian currency notes were seized.
Sources in the Intelligence Bureau (IB) said Iqbal Kana, who is suspected to push at least Rs 1,600 crore of fake notes into India every year, has a tremendous presence in the markets of Jama Masjid and Sadar Bazaar.
"Kana, originally from Kairana in Muzaffarnagar, runs a shop in Lahore and mainly deals with 'savaris' or frequent couriers to Pakistan from Muzaffarnagar," said a senior IB officer.
On January 12, the Special Cell had seized Rs 2.84 crore, in denominations of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 - suspected to have been printed at a government press in Karachi - from a warehouse in southwest Delhi's Dabri.
Sources said Kana has a 'very good rapport with Jama Masjid luggage traders' whose goods for whom are mainly brought to India through train, 'atari' and via land routes of Poonch area.
"As these traders deal in bulk goods, huge payments are made. Many times, fake currency is passed off as real and it then finds its way to smaller markets," the officer said. As a result, police have been told to keep a close eye on everyone operating in these wholesale markets.
On May 27, 2007, three persons were arrested from the New Delhi Railway Station with Rs 5.4 lakh in fake currency. On May 1, 2008, a disc jockey was arrested with Rs 3.85 lakh in fake notes.
"The Delhi Police had nabbed two men and seized Rs 1.35 lakh of fake currency from them on January 22, 2010. Another such seizure was made in October. Since the last decade, the origin of these notes has always been traced to Kana's shop in Lahore," the IB officer said.