17 March: The Indian Finance Ministry has announced that it is to post two Customs Overseas Intelligence Network (COIN) officers to China. One will be stationed in the Indian Embassy in Beijing and one at the Consulate-General in Guangzhou. These are senior postings that will have to be approved by the Appointments Committee of the Indian Cabinet. The officers’ prime responsibility will be to co-operate with the Chinese security agencies in investigations of money laundering operations based in China.
India has a numerous and complex range of intelligence and security agencies. COIN is answerable to the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) which in turn works with the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The appointment of these two officers has wider intelligence implications as there is considerable overlap between criminal and intelligence investigations on overseas postings. COIN officers are already posted in Nepal, Singapore, Brussels, London and Washington.