New Delhi: Five Afghans, who had ingested 370 high purity heroin capsules for smuggling into India, were apprehended at the Delhi airport upon their arrival from Kandahar by officials who hospitalised them and recovered the drug worth Rs 15 crore.
The passengers, who arrived at Terminal-3 of the IGI airport from Kandahar via Kabul on Saturday, were intercepted in a joint operation by officers of the Air Intelligence Unit and the Preventive Branch of IGIA Customs and Special Cell, Delhi Police.
They were taken into custody and produced before the duty magistrate and admitted to Dr Ram Manohar Lohia hospital, Customs officials said on Thursday. During their hospitalisation from September 14-18, they ejected as many as 370 capsules, they said.
The capsules were found to contain a white powdery substance, which preliminary narcotics testing indicated to be heroin of high purity, said the officials. The estimated international market value of the heroin is over Rs 15 crore, they said.
"Ingestion of capsules containing narcotics is a dangerous and rarely used modus operandi, typically employed for smuggling high purity/high value drugs," Deputy Commissioner of Customs, IGI Airport, Kalrav Rakesh Mishra told PTI.
This was a well-coordinated operation which resulted in the seizure of a large quantity of heroin, Mishra said. The capsules have been seized and the five passengers arrested under relevant provisions of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act.