Over 250 Bangladeshi immigrants arrested

Continuing its campaign against illegal Bangladeshi immigrants, the Mumbai Police's Special Branch-I (SB-I) has arrested 252 immigrants from various areas in Mumbai, Navi Mumbai and Thane from December 1 to December 6.

The first raid was in slums near Dahisar checknaka on December 1, based on a tip-off. Cops arrested 57 illegal immigrants, SB-I officials said.

"They were questioned, and based on interrogation, we conducted further raids in areas such as Mira Road, Bhayander, Naigaon, Nallasopara and Kharghar, bringing the total to 252. Of these, 56 are women and 64 minors. They were working as labourers at construction sites or as domestic servants," said Deputy Commissioner of Police Sanjay Shintre, SB-I.

This year, 28 labour contractors have also been arrested for employing illegal immigrants and providing them to builders. Cops said contractors would turn a blind eye to lack of documents in order to recruit cheap labour.

There have also been several detentions of those who were found to have documents like Voter ID cards from other states. They were released after the paperwork was found to be genuine, police said.

"We suspect illegal immigrants flock to Mumbai before elections, after which local political elements help them get Voter ID cards to increase votebanks. These cards are used as identification. We are conducting inquiries," Shintre said. Apart from the 252 arrested in the recent raid, the SB-I has arrested 1,380 illegal immigrants from Mumbai since January, of whom 200 have been deported after inquiries.

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