Finest quality of Methamphetamine worth Rs. 10-cr. seized, says NCB official

The two Iranian nationals arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in Sivaganga district on Friday had used a generator to run the chemical factory and manufacture fine quality of Methamphetamine. NCB officials along with armed commandos stormed the house barely an hour before the two had planned to leave with a consignment of drugs, agency sources said on Saturday.

At least 8 kg of Methamphetamine worth about Rs. 10 crore in the international market and an air gun was seized from their possession. Some local people and drug peddlers who helped them run the chemical factory were absconding. “The Iranian nationals have not revealed much. While language is a barrier to communicate with them, the two claimed ignorance to many aspects saying that they were briefed only on need-to-know basis,” an investigator said.

On why they chose the remote village in Sivaganga district, the official said the place was close to the coast. The Iranians hardly came out of the house while others helping them in procuring raw materials gave an impression that some small scale industry was on in the house. “Since there were frequent power cuts in the locality, the suspects used a generator to run the chemical factory. This was one of the vital clues that led us to the house…it appears that they were operating for quite sometime.”

The Iranians had planned to leave Sivaganga to an undisclosed destination with the 8 kg of Methamphetamine. “It (the contraband) seems to be very pure. We are sending a sample for chemical analysis. This is the first time that a chemical factory manufacturing a scheduled drug has been busted in Tamil Nadu,” he said.

NCB officials were investigating the source/supply of raw materials and distribution network of the suspects. “We were camping in the area for about a fortnight to ascertain the location of the accused persons. The possibility of the drug being exported to South-East Asian countries through the sea is being investigated.”

Special Correspondent adds from Sivaganga:

An NCB official said that besides the Iranian nationals, the owner of the isolated single-storey house located on the Tirupattur-Pudukottai road, a woman, has been arrested.

In a brief chat with the local media on Saturday, Mr Venu, NCB SP, identified the Iran nationals as Mosavi Masoud (49) from Shiraz and Mohammed Zafrani (30) from Tehran.

The house owner was Kaliammal, wife of Palaniappan. The sleuths have cast a dragnet for one or two local people who had escaped from the scene, he said.

Investigation was still going on. “We have to complete the work in our front offices in Chennai, Madurai and Thiruvananthapuram,” he added.

Police sources said Palaniappan, husband of Kaliammal, is in Malaysia and the two Iran nationals came to the house five days ago, posing as his friends.

They are looking for Veeramani, Palaniappan’s nephew, and one Prabu, who had escaped from the house.

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