Kasaragod, 28 April 2015: The investigation into the fake passport centre, also known as ‘Kasargod Embassy’, unearthed in Kasargod and Mangalore some years ago, is likely to be handed over to the Crime Branch of Kerala Police.
The ‘Kasargod Embassy’ was in news following the plane crash in Mangalore that killed 158 persons. At least 12 travellers on the ill-fated Air India flight had secured passport in fake identity from the Kozhikode Passport Office with the help of the racket.
The Internal Security Investigation Team that is currently probing the case has reported to the Crime Branch ADGP that the case had no links with extremist or terrorist elements and hence the transfer.
The case was transferred to the Internal Security Investigation Team in 2012 on the suspicion whether the case had terrorist links. The ISIT had found that the customers of the Kasargod Embassy were job seekers, including some returnees, who had lost their original passports.
The ruling out of terrorist links will be of immense help to nearly 150 of the accused as they will have to face only the usual charges in a fake passport case.
The police are yet to nab around 110 accused in the case who did not return to the state after the scam was unearthed.
Some officials of the Kozhikode passport office and several cops had faced department-level action in the case. The main accused in the case included some travel agents who functioned in Kozhikode and Kasargod.