CBI busts trafficking racket sending Indians to Russian warfronts, 7 cities including Delhi witness raids: Report

Chandigarh, Mumbai, Chennai and Madurai were among the cities that witnessed CBI raid

cbi Representational image.

A day after a youth from Hyderabad lost his life fighting for Russia on the frontlines of Ukraine, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Thursday busted a gang involved in trafficking Indian citizens to Russia. 

According to news reports, CBI raided over 10 locations after it got information about the presence of the human trafficking network in seven different cities including two in Tamil Nadu. The central agency raided locations in Delhi, Thiruvananthapuram, Ambala, Chandigarh, Mumbai, Chennai and Madurai, NDTV said in a report. 

The CBI's case reportedly named Dubai-based Youtuber Faisal Khan. According to the NDTV report, Faisal Khan's name repeatedly cropped up during its interaction with the kin of Indian youths who were tricked into joining Russian war efforts after being promised high-paying jobs in the country. 

Over 20 Indian citizens fell into the trap and ended up on the war front. Amongst them was Telangana-native Mohammed Asfan, whose death in an Ukrainian offensive was confirmed on Wednesday.

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Afsan, 30, was working in a clothing store in Hyderabad till September. He received an ‘invitation letter’ in Russian sent by an agent for processing his visa. According to the letter, Afsan was employed with a semi-conductor company located in Hyderabad’s IT corridor.

The letter said the purpose of Afsan’s trip to Russia was to “provide IT services”. According to his family, he neither did work for the said company, nor was he an IT professional.

Afsan got his visa allegedly based on this and flew to Russia in late 2023.

A few days ago, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had said India is doing its best to get an "early discharge" of nearly 20 Indians who are working as support staff to the Russian army.

External affairs ministry spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal said these 20 Indians had contacted Indian authorities seeking assistance to come back home.

"We have an understanding that 20-odd people are stuck. We are trying our level best for their early discharge. We have issued two statements which you saw. We have also told people not to venture into the war zone or get caught into situations which are difficult. It. We are in regular touch with Russian authorities both here in New Delhi and also in Moscow," Jaiswal had said.

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