How heroin seizure in Gujarat impacted a Kolapakkam apartment

The residents of Govardhan Giri Apartments in Chennai’s Kolapakkam are now wary. For, they are seeing a lot of visitors from the media and officials these days after the massive seizure heroin in Gujarat’s Mundra Port last month.
Representative Image
Representative Image

Chennai

The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) officials seizing 3,000 kg heroin, estimated to be valued at Rs 21,000 crore, from the port, had its reverberations in Govardhan Giri Apartments after its residents, Machavaram Sudhakar and wife Govindaraju Durga Purna Vaishali, getting picked by the agency. 
The arrests came as a huge shock not only for other residents but also for those living on that street. To them, the couple did not seem to be capable of having means to source heroin of huge scale or value. 
With a little prodding, reluctant residents tell the media that the couple, Sudhakar and Vaishali, who have two small children, were leading a normal life. According to the neighbours, they were religious and used to conduct prayers in the morning. “The Telugu couple who spoke fluent Tamil were generally reserved and did not have many visitors,” a resident said. 
As to Sudhakar’s job, police said he was employed with a cargo agent. It is said Sudhakar had lost his job last year after the pandemic. Their firm, Aashi Trading Company, came into being around that time. 
The heroin shipment originated from Afghanistan and was shipped to Gujarat from Iran’s Bandar Abbas Port. The goods and services tax (GST) number used for consignment belongs to a company registered in Andhra Pradesh’s Vijayawada. However, it was later found that Vaishali had taken the GST registration last year giving her mother Govindaraju Taraka’s Vijayawada address. Vaishali had also taken an import and export licence (IEC Code) from the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT). 
After the DRI got a tip off that the narcotics were declared as semi-processed talc stones originating from Afghanistan and shipped via Iran’s Bandar Abbas to Mundra, it detained two containers for examination under the provisions of Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substance Act. 
Subsequently, the couple was arrested and taken to Gujarat for further investigation while their two children were left with a close relative.

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