US-Canada border deaths: Indian cops detain six
Posted: Jan 31, 2022
POLICE in the western Indian state of Gujarat have detained six people in a crackdown in connection to "illegal" immigration after four Indians were found dead in extreme cold conditions near the border between the United States and Canada last week, Reuters reported citing official sources.
Several Indians, mostly from the states of Gujarat and Punjab, try to cross the challenging weather at the border between US and Canada every year in search of better life and job opportunities.00:00/00:00
The Indian cops said they identified the four deceased who belonged to the same family after law-enforcement agencies on the border provided them photographs of passports and other belongings.
"We are now trying to nab the human traffickers who managed to send this family and others abroad via illegal channels," A K Jhala, a police officer in Gandhinagar, the capital of Gujarat, was quoted as saying by the news outlet.
The six people held by the police were operating a travel and tourism company, he added.
Authorities in the US also charged an individual in that country with human trafficking after the four, including a man, woman, baby and teenager, were discovered dead in the Canadian province of Manitoba bordering the US state of Minnesota.
The ill-fated family was among four families from the same village who had travelled to the border in January.
According to the officials, the family got separated from a group of 18 people and were likely to have been caught in a blizzard and it resulted in the tragedy which Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau called "mind-blowing".
The situation came to light only when the group was caught by officials and one of them was found to be carrying a backpack containing baby supplies even though there was no infant with the group.
"The nexus of human trafficking runs deep, often involving local politicians too," Jhala said, adding that people even sell their land and houses to raise money to reach the US or Canada.
An official in India’s foreign ministry said authorities were coordinating with border officials in the US and Canada to probe the tragedy.
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