Indian Coast Guard seizes Sri Lankan boats off Minicoy islands

They were allegedly carrying narcotics, unauthorised communication equipment.

Three Sri Lankan boats — Akarsha Duwa, Chathu Rani 03 and Chathu Rani 08 — that were allegedly carrying unauthorised telecommunication equipment and narcotics were seized by the Indian Coast Guard and brought to the Vizhinjam harbour in Thiruvananthapuram on Sunday.

The boats, carrying 19 crew members, were intercepted by the Coast Guard ship Varaha seven nautical miles south-south west off Minicoy in Indian territorial waters on March 5, according to the Defence public relations office in Thiruvananthapuram.

The crew of Akarsha Duwa admitted to have received 200 kg of heroin and 60 kg of hashish from a Pakistani boat around 400 nautical miles west off Lakshadweep.

There were apparently five packets of the contraband.

An official release said the skipper of Akarsha Duwa contacted its ‘main operator,’ identified as Sanjay Anna, using a Thuraya communication set, on noticing the Coast Guard ship. While they were allegedly advised to ‘flee with full speed,’ the skipper reported it was not possible and dumped the communication set and the packets in the sea.

On being brought to the Vizhinjam harbour, the boats were handed over to security agencies for detailed investigation. 

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