islamabad - The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has arrested two alleged members of a transnational gang who were allegedly involved in selling human organs fraudulently by tempting the needy Pakistanis through promises of giving big money.

An official of FIA told The Nation that the agency had arrested two accused of the group in the fraud case in which the alleged culprits used to arrange liver donations fraudulently by luring the poor people. However, the accused used to give few rupees to the donors and later their liver parts (tissues) were sold out at hefty amount for liver transplantation in India.

The official confirmed that the accused had established a consultancy firm claiming that they provide consultancy services to those clients in Pakistan who need to be treated abroad in UK and India.

The accused Khawaja Ismail is in the custody of the FIA along with his alleged accomplice, he said.

The matter came in the limelight last month when Senate standing committee on interior had tasked the interior ministry to investigate a case of selling human organs fraudulently allegedly by a transnational gang. A victim Waqar Khan had appeared before the committee and told his ordeal how he became ready to ‘donate’ his liver tissues for Rs 1 million but he only got fifty thousand rupees from the alleged gang. Waqar Khan, a resident of Tench Bhata area of Rawalpindi, had said that he was in need of money for the treatment of his mother and was jobless at that time. “I met one of the members of that gang who offered Rs 1 million to me for selling my liver tissues for transplantation purposes of a patient,” he said.

The Nation tried to contact the firm to have its point of view on the phone numbers available on its website but no one picked up the phone despite repeated attempts. The firm provides services for liver, heart, lungs, bone marrow and kidney transplant, besides provision of other medical services abroad. However, the website of the firm does not show the name of any of its directors or managers.

Waqar Khan told The Nation that Director General Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) had summoned him in his office some days ago and had heard him. He, however, showed his ignorance about any arrest but added that Khawaja Ismail was the main culprit in the case.

The Senate committee on interior in its meeting held in April had also asked the interior ministry to probe how the alleged gang succeeded to get issued the passport and Indian visa to the victim without his visit to any government office. Waqar was later taken to India to take out his liver tissues for transplantation to a liver patient.

“The activities of group were also brought in the notice of FIA but according to my information, FIA inspector Chaudhry Nazir released the culprits after taking bribe of Rs 5.6 million,” the victim had testified before the committee. “I neither visited any passport office nor an embassy but got a passport along with a visa to travel to India,” he said and added he was brought to the Wagah Border on January 27, 2015 where he was handed over passport and travelling documents for travelling to India. Later, an Indian national received them and he was taken to a hospital in New Dehli where he was operated upon to extract his liver tissues. “After the successful operation, the gang refused to give me the remaining amount and started giving me life threats,” he said. He said that he was still facing threats from the culprits who were very powerful.

Waqar had told the standing committee that Islamabad’s Aabpara police had arrested two members of the gang in December 2014 when he was coming back along with them after giving blood samples at Islamabad Diagnostic Centre for tests. Later, the police released them after getting bribe from them amounting to around Rs 0.3 to 0.4 million, he had alleged. The police had also registered another such case of taking the ‘donor’ to India fraudulently.