Ketamine drug racket:‘Trio paid ₹70K a month to Goa politico’
The three men – Vietnamese national Nyugeh Kuong and British nationals Jonathan Thorn and John Brecken – arrested in connection with the Ketamine smuggling racket paid a monthly rent of ₹70,000 to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Vasudev Parab to use his plot in Goa, according to directorate of revenue intelligence (DRI). Although Parab claimed he was unaware of the chemicals being produced in the factory, DRI is likely to interrogate him.
In the three-day Operation Vitamin earlier this week, DRI raided 14 residential and industrial places in Maharashtra, Gujarat and Goa and seized 308kg Ketamine, 2,000kg of raw material that could be used to manufacture 250kg of Ketamine, hashish, cocaine and opium worth nearly ₹35crores. Ten people, including four foreigners, were arrested. Three of the raided spots were in Goa, including Vijay Industries at Pissurlem IDC in Sattari that was set up on the plot of the head of BJP north Goa. “Parab didn’t have a lease licence, despite which he gave out the premises to the accused. He claims he didn’t know they made chemicals there. Parab has been questioned and his statement will be recorded soon,” said a DRI source.
Targeting Parab on the DRI action, the local Congress leadership has put up an article on their website stating: “Why is the BJP hiring, promoting & protecting individuals that possess highly dangerous & potentially lethal narcotics.”
Meanwhile, the probe indicated linkages of British nationals with the international drug mafias operating in the United Kingdom and Africa. “The two had set up a small facility in various countries, including in Congo, Kenya and Nigeria, where they would process the semi-finished Ketamine (exported from India) into pure Ketamine. DRI will soon get in touch with officials in London,” said a senior DRI official. The arrested foreigners were on Thursday brought to the city from Goa on transit remand.