Found at IGIA: Currency inside peanut shells, meat ballsUpdated: Feb 13, 2020 00:01 IST
In a bizarre catch, bundles of foreign currency notes worth Rs 45 lakh were recovered from one kg peanut shells, semi-cooked minced mutton balls and biscuit packets at Indira Gandhi International Airport’s Terminal-3 on Tuesday evening.
Officials said the currency was found with a 26-year-old man who was scheduled to board a flight to Dubai. He was caught when he was spotted hurrying with his baggage for the check-in.
According to officers of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), which guards the airport, the surveillance and intelligence staff spotted a man who was frequently switching queues at the check-in counters around 6.30 pm.
“When our team approached him for assistance, and asked him if he was about to miss his flight, he said he only wanted to get his check-in his bags registered with the airline. On enquiry, he revealed his identity as Murad Alam from Saharanpur, UP. He said he is travelling to Dubai on tourist visa. When we asked him what he was carrying, he said there were eatables in his bags. Our men asked him to cooperate for a detailed scanning of his bags but he insisted on completing registering his baggage first,” said a senior CISF officer requesting anonymity.
The officials grew suspicious and the man was taken to a random checking area. “On X-ray screening of his baggage, we noticed suspicious images inside his bag. The bags were opened and we recovered packed food and snacks. When we asked him to open the packets, he said it was mutton and he can’t open it as he is a vegetarian. Our men opened the packet and found mutton balls in it. When one of these balls were cut open, bundles up currency notes were found inside. From another packet, we recovered peanut shells glued together. Currency notes were stuffed in them. Some biscuit packets with the man had foreign currency concealed,” said the officer.
Hemendra Singh, assistant inspector general, CISF, said the notes included Saudi riyals, Qatar riyals, Kuwaiti Dinars, Omani riyals and Euros.
“The currency recovered is worth Rs 45 lakh. Because the man could not produce any valid document for carrying the currency, he was handed over to the Customs for further investigation,” Singh said.
The man said he worked as a manager at a company and belongs to Saharanpur in UP. “Initial probe suggests he is a carrier who had been promised a good sum to deliver the money to a contact in Dubai. He said he had made three similar trips to Dubai last year,” the officer said.