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Blow to police hunt for international drug trafficking gang

india Updated: Sep 12, 2014 11:53 IST
Avantika Mehta
Avantika Mehta
Hindustan Times
soma shekhar

In a blow to Delhi police’s hunt for an international drug trafficking module, a city court has refused to frame charges of conspiracy against an accused Soma Shekhar — touted by cops as an important operative of the module.

Additional Sessions Judge VK Khanna has however framed the charge of ‘possession of a commercial quantity of a narcotic substance’ against Shekhar, who was arrested with 4 kilos of heroin on March 27 this year.

The court has fixed the matter for December in order to depose the twelve witnesses relied upon by the prosecution.

The 32-year-old businessman, a graduate of Hyderabad's Indian School of Business Management (ISBM), was arrested from the Nizamuddin Railway Station by the Crime Branch on a Thursday night. Cops claim the arrest followed a reliable "tip-off".

At that time, Additional Commissioner of Police (Crime) Ravindra Yadav had told media that Shekhar was "an operative of international drug trafficking module." He had also added that "8 kilos from Shekhar and 29 kilos of heroine was recovered from the arrested members of this module, the total cost of which is around Rs 100 crore." However, the court noted that only 4 kilos were found on Shekhar.

The cops had also claimed that Shekhar had confessed he had started trafficking drugs at the instance of a Kuwait-based "NRI called Rajni."

They’d also said that Shekhar told them of the drug route in which heroin was brought from Srinagar, J&K. However, the FIR made no mention of other arrests, or a drug trafficking module. The chargesheet, too, is silent on the issue of criminal conspiracy.

The prosecution listed twelve witnesses to prove their case against Shekhar.

The cops had also said that they were investigating the entire chain of source and suppliers of the heroin in J&K, Hyderabad and other places.