New Delhi: With the seizure of 22 sophisticated pistols and arrest of three persons on Tuesday, police claimed to have busted an alleged gang which used to smuggle illegal weapons from Madhya Pradesh to Delhi by hiding them in especially designed cavities in their car.
Salaam (52), Kalua (57) both residents of Meerut, Uttar Pradesh and Pradeep Mandlik alias Bhavadiya (24), a resident of Ahmadnagar, Maharastra were arrested by the Special Cell of Delhi police after it received a tip off about the gang.
"The gang procured sophisticated pistols from Balwadi in Dhar district of Madhya Pradesh and sold them further to criminal elements in Delhi and NCR.
"22 semi-automatic pistols bearing `Made In England` mark along with 22 magazines, a Hyundai Santro car has been recovered from them. The weapons were meant to be supplied in Kardampuri and Mangol Puri areas," said Deputy Commissioner of Police (Special Cell) Sanjeev Kumar Yadav.
An input was received that a big consignment of illegal weapons shall be supplied in a car bearing UP number at Wazirabad Road, following which, a trap was laid.
At about 9:20 am, a grey colour car came from UP and halted on the service road of Main Wazirabad Road, he said.
"Two persons came out of the vehicle holding a bag and were waiting for someone. The driver remained seated in the car. All the three persons were overpowered by the police team in a matter of seconds. On interrogation, they initially tried to bluff the Special Cell team on one pretext or the other.
"However, they ultimately revealed that there were inbuilt capsule cavities below backseat of the car besides its petrol tank and inside the front doors to conceal the weapons," said Yadav.
Accordingly, a case under appropriate sections of law has been registered at Special Cell police station and the trio was arrested, he said.
According to police, an in-house study into the growing use of sophisticated firearms over last few years revealed that in most of the cases, illegal weapons were manufactured and supplied from Munger, Bihar into Delhi and NCR.
Subsequent investigations also revealed that Balwadi in Madhya Pradesh has also emerged as a major weapon manufacturing hub from where it is supplied to different parts of the country, including Delhi and NCR.
"During investigation, involvement of Tanman Singh resident of Sendhwa, MP, as manufacturer as well as main supplier of illegal arms and ammunition has been revealed. He manufactures and gets delivered illegal firearms to his contacts in Delhi and NCR through Salaam, Kalua and Pradeep Mandlik," said Yadav.
It is also revealed that in the past, the trio had supplied at least one such consignment every fortnight. Further investigation is in progress and efforts are being made to track down Tanman and arrest him, police said.