CBI charges Indian Airlines flight IC 405 hijacker 'Harfan Maula' for cheating

Central Bureau of Investigation, CBI, Plane Hijack, Airlines flight, Indian Airlines flight IC 405, Srinagar to New Delhi
New Delhi : The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has charged a dreaded pro-Khalistan terrorist, who had hijacked Srinagar-New Delhi Indian Airlines flight in 1984 and taken it to Lahore with having acquired an Afghanistan passport under an assumed identity to migrate to Canada.

In a recent charge sheet filed recently, the agency accused Parminder Singh Saini alias Harfan Maula for procuring a fake Afghanistan passport in the name of Balbir Singh in Pakistan in 1995, CBI sources said.

The agency has said that Saini used this passport to migrate to Canada, where he got himself a driving and social security licenses on the basis of forged travel documents acquired in Pakistan.

The sources said although the agency had taken over the hijacking case on July 5, 1984, it could not begin criminal proceedings because of a conviction in Pakistan for the same crime. He was later released and migrated to Canada using an assumed identity, the sources said.

In its charge sheet filed in Patiala House Court, CBI has cited Letters Rogatory received from Canada, where Saini was detained in 1995 after his fraud was found, the sources said. Saini was deported to India in 2010 after a long legal battle in Canada, where he had sought permanent residence.

Indian Airlines flight IC 405 from Srinagar to New Delhi carrying 255 passengers and a crew of nine was diverted and forced to land in Lahore, Pakistan, on July 6, 1984. The terrorists demanded the release of Harmandar Singh Sandho, General Secretary of the All-India Sikh Students Federation, among other prominent members leaders and $25 million ransom.

The Pakistan government released him in 1995 with instructions to leave the country to the country of his choice within one month, the sources said. Saini arranged a fake Afghan passport while in Pakistan with an assumed identity of Balbir Singh to migrate to Canada February 3, 1995.

The sources claimed that it would not have been possible for a convicted terrorist to leave that country on the basis of fake passport unless some sort of support mechanism existed for him there. Saini managed to acquire driving license and social security documents while in Toronto before he was exposed by the local authorities in September, 1995.

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