Punjab drugs haul: Indian origin Briton, ex-cop held

Chandigarh, March 19 (IANS) Hours before he was planning to fly out of India, a British national of Indian origin was arrested for his role in the multi-million dollar drugs racket spanning Europe, Canada and the US, Punjab Police said Tuesday.

Kulwant Singh, a British national who originally hails from Phagwara town in Punjab, was among the three people arrested in the drugs racket busted recently, police said.

Kulwant Singh was arrested from a hotel in Mahipalpur area of Delhi Tuesday, police said.

Co-accused Kirpal Singh, a retired deputy superintendent of police (DSP) of Uttar Pradesh Police, was arrested from Meerut in Uttar Pradesh and conduit Harpreet Singh was taken into custody from Patiala, a police spokesman said here.

"Punjab Police today arrested three more persons in the Fatehgarh Sahib drug recovery case, in which Anoop Singh Kahlon (a Canadian national) had been earlier arrested and 28.6 kg heroin had been recovered. About 30 kg raw material for production of 'Ice' drug has also been recovered," the spokesman said.

"Kulwant Singh was planning to fly out of the country tomorrow. His ticket has been seized," the spokesman said, adding that Kulwant was the organiser of the drugs distribution network in Europe and Canada, where the gang used to send the drugs.

"The intelligence wing of Punjab Police is doing the requisite liaison with the British and Canadian police authorities, who have contacted us," he said.

Two people arrested earlier - Anoop Singh Kahlon and Mani Gill - are Canadian citizens, he said.

Kirpal Singh was running a pharmaceutical factory at Meerut and was one of the main suppliers of raw material, amphetamine, used for production of Ice drug, which is popular among youths in party circles, police said.

Harpreet Singh was a conduit between the suppliers and those who sent and distributed drugs abroad, police said.

The Fatehgarh Sahib district police in Punjab earlier this month (March 7) recovered from Kahlon over 28 kg heroin, worth Rs.130 crore in the international market.

The haul was made from Kahlon's flat in Zirakpur, near Chandigarh, and his car, police said.

Police also found a sport utility vehicle, registered in the name of international boxer Vijender Singh's wife Archana, parked outside Kahlon's flat.

Kahlon reportedly told police that Vijender and fellow boxer Ram Singh were his "clients".

Punjab Police have already questioned Vijender in connection with the drugs racket. The boxer has, so far, refused to give his blood and hair samples to police.

Vijender, who is a deputy superintendent of police in Haryana Police, was questioned by a Punjab Police team recently.

Though police have so far refrained from directly linking Vijender with the drugs haul, Ram Singh's statements to police have seen Vijender's name figuring in the controversy.

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