The Central Bureau of Investigation swooped on the New Customs House here and nabbed an Assistant Commissioner of Customs and a Superintendent of Customs in an alleged bribery case, officials said here on Thursday.
The officials are identified as A. P. Bandekar and Niraj K. Singh, respectively, who were produced before a court and sent to custody till February 27.
According to a complaint, a Kolhapur-based company had purchased 74 kg silver from an Ahmedabad supplier on October 5, 2020.
Of this, 60 kg silver in two packets was sent from Gujarat to Maharahstra but it was seized by the Customs Department here the following day.
The complainant attended the enquiry held by Superintendent of Customs (Preventive) Singh at the New Customs House and was taken to the Assistant Commissioner of Customs, Bandekar.
There, the complainant alleged that the duo demanded bribes of total Rs 19 lakh from him to clear the silver consignment.
Following the complaint, a CBI set a trap and nabbed Singh red-handed while accepting the bribe amount of Rs 2 lakh and Bandekar was caught later.
The CBI raided the offices and residences of both the officials to come up with certain incriminating documents. Further investigations are on.
41 people dead in shipwreck off Tunisia: UN
A shipwreck off the coast of southeast Tunisia killed at least 41 people, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said in a joint statement.
The UN agencies said in the statement issued on Friday that three survivors have been rescued and the search effort was still underway, reports Xinhua news agency.
Based on initial information, the UN agencies said that all those who died were from Sub-Saharan Africa.
“This tragic loss of life underscores once again the need to enhance and expand state-led search and rescue operations across the Central Mediterranean, where some 290 people have lost their lives so far this year,” said the statement.
18 people killed in Nigeria Boko Haram attack
Eighteen people were killed and 21 others injured when members of the Boko Haram terror group attacked Nigeria’s northeastern town of Damasak earlier this week, wreaking havoc in the area, a top official said.
Babagana Umara Zulum, governor of the restive state of Borno, told reporters on Friday during he confirmed the toll from Tuesday’s attack during a visit to Damasak, reports Xinhua news agency.
“The UN humanitarian hub, private residential houses, a police station, a primary healthcare centre were among properties destroyed,” said Zulum.
He said he visited Damasak to fully assess the extent of damage and interact well with security officials involved in the counter-insurgency operations in the town, adding measures were put in place to forestall future attacks.
Boko Haram has been trying to establish an Islamist state in northeastern Nigeria since 2009.
The terror group has also extended its attacks to other countries in the Lake Chad Basin.
Rescue ops to locate missing fishermen on, 3 bodies recovered
The Indian Navy recovered the bodies of three missing fishermen from the sea off the coast of Mangaluru in Karnataka on Friday.
The Navy will resume its search and rescue operation on Saturday to find the remaining six missing fishermen.
“Indian Naval Ship Nireekshak recovers three bodies of missing fishermen from the IFB ‘Rabah’ ship, to enter Mangalore port on Friday midnight to hand over the bodies,” the Indian Navy stated.
The Navy has deployed its surface and air assets for the Search and Rescue (SAR) operation launched for the missing fishermen in the sea off the coast of Mangaluru.
“It was reported that an Indian fishing boat, IFB Rabah, with 14 fishermen had suffered a collision with a Singapore flag merchant ship, MV APL Le Havre, 40 nautical miles west of Mangaluru at about 2 am on April 13,” the Navy said.
The boat IFB Rabah had set off from Beypore in Kozhikode district in Kerala on Sunday evening.
The India Coast Guard (ICG) confirmed the rescue of two crew members after an operation that began on Tuesday. After Wednesday, the Indian Navy was roped in for the search and rescue operation.
Indian Naval ships along with naval aircraft from Goa have been deployed in the area to augment the search and rescue efforts of the Coast Guard vessels.
While two rescued fishermen have been shifted to safety ashore, six bodies have been recovered thus far. The search is on for the remaining six fishermen.
To assist in the rescue efforts, INS Subhadra, a patrol vessel, was sailed from Karwar along with a diving team.
The ship arrived on the scene in the early hours of April 14.
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