New Delhi, Jan 5: A telephone call from a ship off Kutch coast to US about an arms consignment has set alarm bells ringing in the security establishment, which have alerted Navy and Coast Guard about possible arrival of arms and ammunition along the Indian coastline.
All the coastal states including Gujarat and Maharashtra have also been asked to step up patrolling in the sea and keep an eye about illegal activities, official sources said here. The security agencies believe that terrorists may try to replicate the 26/11 terror attack. The 2008 attack in Mumbai carried out by Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists using the sea route from Pakistan.
The alert came following an interception of a telephone call on December 31 by a Central security agency in which an unidentified person made a call through Thuraya satellite from a ship, which was at that time at Gulf of Kutch, around 8 km from the Gujarat coast, to a US number.
During the 232 seconds English conversation, the receiver enquired about the precise maritime location of the ship, consignment of the weapons, nature of the customs patrol etc, the sources said.
Acting on the information, the Centre asked Coast Guard and Navy to intensify patrolling along coastline and high seas, check movement of ships and monitor fishing trawlers.
The security agencies suspect it to be an international gun-running operation and alerted all concerned agencies to take necessary steps to stop any such consignment.