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Behind bars from Big Apple

Calcutta, Dec. 26: Anita Ben Babulal Patel had managed a new name and passport to get a job and settle down in the US, but her eyeballs gave away the truth.

Anita, 23, who was pushed back from the US three years ago and banned entry in that country, was sent back by the US authorities again yesterday to Calcutta, from where the woman from Gujarat had obtained her last visa.

She failed an eyeball test at New York airport. Police here arrested her today.

Anita had gone to the US in search of a job in 2004. “But she stayed beyond her visa period. The US authorities detected it and she was sent back to India. They put a stamp on her passport, banning her entry into the US,” an immigration official at Calcutta airport said.

In spite of that, Anita tried to go to the US again from Chennai in 2005. She was denied visa.

This year, she came to Calcutta and met Sanjay Saraf, 45, in her uncle’s neighbourhood at Bhowanipore.

“She hatched a plan with Saraf to get a new passport by posing as his wife,” an official said.

“Anita Saraf” got the new passport.

On December 19, Sanjay and Anita went to Bangkok from Calcutta and took a flight to the Big Apple the next day.

At John F Kennedy Airport, immigration officials detained Anita as her eyeball pictures matched with that of another woman’s. Anita Saraf broke down during interrogation and confessed to being Anita Ben Babulal Patel.

They were detained at Calcutta airport last night and handed over to police today. Sources said Sanjay, a small-time businessman, and Anita slept through the day and couldn’t be questioned.

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