New Delhi, March 7: A senior scientific officer associated with the CBI was today arrested from the Indira Gandhi International Airport on charges of smuggling foreign currency to Dubai.
Around Rs 71.5 lakh worth foreign and Indian currency notes were found from C.K. Jain, who was caught after he had passed through the customs clearance at the airport around 7 this morning. He was to board an Air-India flight to Dubai, which originates from Jaipur.
Jain heads the physics department in the Central Foreign Science Laboratory, whose general administration lies with the CBI.
Sleuths of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, who were keeping a watch on Jain following prior intelligence, found foreign currency notes worth Rs 63.5 lakh and another bundle of Rs 81,000 when they searched his belongings. Apart from this, about 5 lakh Saudi riyals and 8,000 dirhams were also found.
The directorate officials found more currency ó both Indian and foreign ó amounting to nearly Rs 10 lakh when they raided Jainís Mayur Vihar-I house and office in the CBI building. Several documents, including his passport, have been seized.
Directorate sources alleged that Jain was able to cross the security zone at the airport as he was flaunting his identity card issued by the CBI. Jain allegedly had taken leave, saying he had some official work.
Preliminary investigations have revealed that Jain has visited Dubai 15 times. Directorate officials suspect that he could be a conduit of a big hawala racket since Dubai has been the epicentre of hawala funding for the underworld and militants.
The directorate is interrogating Jain to find out how much he had smuggled during his earlier visits to Dubai and whom has he been working for. Sources alleged that last time, he had carried around Rs 80 lakh.
Jainís visits to the port city have been unofficial and without the knowledge of the office, the directorate alleged. Jain, who has been booked under the Customs Act, will be produced before a city court tomorrow.
Jain was recruited by the CFSL in 1968 as a laboratory assistant. He went on to become a senior scientific officer, which is a class-one gazetted officer post equivalent to an undersecretary. CFSL falls under the Union ministry of home affairs.
Sources said the intelligence wing of the CBI was also trailing Jain following information on his involvement in smuggling foreign currency.