It rained arms that night. Around midnight of December 16-17, 1995, villagers of Purulia, West Bengal, who happened to be at the wrong place at the right time, were taken aback by the consignment of sophisticated weaponry that fell from the sky. Also left groping in the dark were India's investigative and intelligence agencies. Outlook's effort to piece together a version of what really happened from sources familiar with the case makes the case curiouser and curiouser.
On December 10, 1995, an AN-26 landed at Burgas, Bulgaria, to collect 77 wooden cases of arms. The consignment contained 300 AK-47 assault rifles, 15 Makarov pistols, two sniper rifles with night-vision sights, two night-vision binoculars, 25,000 rounds of rifle ammunition, 6,000 rounds of pistol ammo, 10 rpg-7 rocket launchers, 100 grenades, 100 anti-tank grenades and 25 PM79 anti-personnel mines - enough arms to take on a small army. It appears the British intelligence had advance information about the operation in September but passed it on to the RAW only in late November that year.