Six Bangladeshi nationals have been arrested in Bihar in two separate incidents, one for carrying forged documents that identified him as an Indian and five others for a dacoity in Siwan, north Bihar.
In one incident, the Patna police on Thursday arrested a Bangladesh national for trying to procure an Indian passport citing forged papers that identified him as a resident of Nawada in south central Bihar.
Acting on a tip-off, a police team caught Abdul Mannan, a resident of Kalopra Parsen under Navagaon district of Bangladesh, from the premises of the regional passport office at Ashiana Nagar under Shastri Nagar police station here.
Although he had furnished his residential address at a location in Nawada in Bihar, the man was unable to speak Hindi. This raised suspicion among the officials at the office, who informed the police.
Mannan then tried to flee from the scene but the police arrested him. During a search of his personal effects, the officers found a fake Aadhaar card, a pass book of a bank branch at Nawada and a cell phone.
During his interrogation, Mannan revealed the name of one Noor Mohammad of Nawada who allegedly provided him fake documents and sent him to the regional passport office in Patna to get his Indian passport.
According to Patna SSP Manu Maharaaj, members of gang facilitating the making of fake passports in the state capital fraudulently used the documents of an Indian national to process the passport request of the Bangladeshi national.
Maharaaj told HT that preliminary investigation suggested that after procuring an Indian passport on the basis of forged papers, the Bangla national was planning to head to Saudi Arabia.
Some passport officials were also under the police scanner, this connection. “Following the arrest of Mannan, the police have decided to launch a passport verification drive,” the SSP said, adding this was not an isolated incident.
Earlier, in 2012, a joint team of IB and Patna police had arrested Bangladesh resident Mohammed Noor Nabi from regional passport office at Ashiana Nagar, also on the charge of trying to procure a passport using forged documents.
At that time, Shahabul Haq, a local resident, was also arrested for trying to facilitate Nabi. A senior state official said it was suspected that several Bangladeshi nationals had managed to obtain Indian passports using spurious papers.
In the other incident, the Siwan police have arrested 12 criminals of a gang, including five Bangladeshi men, for their involvement in a series of recent incidents of dacoity and loot.
The Bangladeshi nationals were identified as Sahinoor (Dhaka), Ekram, Mohammad Badal Khan, Imadul Sheikh and Reena Khatoon. All these persons had rented an accommodation at Makhdumsarai in Siwan and managed to procure Aadhaar card and Voter ID cards.
The mastermind of the gang, Esraful, husband of Khatoon, also a Bangladeshi man, had yet to be arrested, said ASP Arvind Kumar Gupta. According to Gupta, all the five Bangladeshis had been residing in the area for the past one-and-a half years, under assumed names.
“We are looking at how these persons, whose credentials appear to be fake, managed to get permanent residency certificate, Voter ID, bank passbook and Aadhaar card to project themselves as Indian citizens,” said Gupta.
A case had been registered against them for illegal stay in the area under the relevant sections of the Foreigners’ Act, the ASP added.
For the purpose of establishing their credentials as Indians, the arrested persons claimed to have bribed local election office and Aadhaar card officials to procure the fake papers, other sources said.
On being questioned, the arrested persons revealed the names of several persons, including an advocate and a government official who helped them procure Aadhaar and Voter ID cards.