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Wednesday,26-January-2022

Crime

Tollywood drugs case: Actor Ravi Teja appears before ED

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Tollywood actor Ravi Teja and his driver on Thursday appeared before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with a money laundering probe linked to the 2017 drug case.

The popular actor reached the ED office here around 10 a.m. in response to the summons issued by the agency.

Ravi Teja’s driver and aide Srinivas also appeared before the ED officials. Both are likely to be questioned about their financial transactions.

Key accused Calvin Mascarenhas is also likely to be called for questioning again. His statement was recorded on Tuesday and the celebrities are being quizzed on the basis of his statement.

Ravi Teja is the sixth Tollywood personality to appear before ED. Director Puri Jagannadh and actors Charmee Kaur, Rakul Preet Singh, Nandu and Daggubati Rana were questioned since August 31.

Rana was questioned for nearly seven hours on Wednesday as part of the probe into suspected links of some celebrities with the accused involved in the case.

The ED had last month issued notices to 10 persons connected to Tollywood and two others including a private club manager as part of a money laundering probe linked to the case related to the smuggling of ‘Class A’ narcotic substances, including LSD and MDMA.

Actors Navdeep, Mumaith Khan and Tanish have also been summoned by the ED in connection the drugs racket which was busted with the arrest of drug peddlers in 2017.

Rana and Rakul Preet did not figure in the list of Tollywood celebrities questioned by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of Telangana’s prohibition and excise department in 2017.

However, Rakul Preet was questioned by the Narcotics Control Bureau, Mumbai, last year in an alleged drugs nexus in Bollywood.

The drugs racket was busted on July 2, 2017 when customs officials arrested Calvin Mascarenhas, a musician, and two others and seized drugs worth Rs 30 lakh from their possession.

They had reportedly told the investigators that they are supplying drugs to film celebrities, software engineers, and even students of some corporate schools. Mobile numbers of some Tollywood celebrities were allegedly found in their contact lists.

The excise department had constituted SIT for a comprehensive probe. A total of 12 cases were registered, 30 people were arrested while 62 individuals including 11 people connected with Tollywood were examined by the SIT under section 67 of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act and section 161 of Criminal Procedure Code.

An American, a South African and a Netherlands national were among those arrested.

The SIT had collected blood, hair, nail and other samples from some of those who appeared before it for question and sent them for analysis.

The SIT filed charge sheet in eight out of 12 cases. It, however, gave clean chit to the film personalities who were questioned as part of the investigation.

Crime

Big crackdown: Delhi Police bust several arms syndicates ahead of R-Day

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 In a crackdown, Delhi Police have busted several illegal arms supply syndicates that may have emerged as a security threat in the national capital ahead of Republic Day celebrations.

In just past five days, police have arrested 6 notorious arms dealers who used to supply illegal arms and ammunition to the gangsters of Delhi, out of which the last was been found to have illegal financial links with subversive modules based abroad.

In the first operation, the Special Cell on January 21 announced arrest of a wanted arms dealer who supplied weapons to conspirators, who plotted to kill a Delhi-based Kashmiri Pandit. The accused, identified as Haji Shamim alias Shamim Pistol, was a notorious illegal arms supplier and had been supplying illegal arms for more than 15 years.

First arrested in an illegal arms case in 2007, he deals in sophisticated arms including foreign-made arms.

The dconspiracy to kill the Kashmiri Pandit social activist was hatched by a person named Randeep, who has been absconding since 2014 and is hiding abroad. It was learnt that he runs an international drug cartel and enjoys the support of Pakistan. In this whole conspiracy, weapons were arranged by Shamim.

The second operation was conducted on January 22 in which an illegal arms factory that was manufacturing around 1,000 weapons per year was busted by the Delhi Police in Uttar Pradesh’s Aligarh district and one man was apprehended in this connection. The details about the arms factory were revealed during the interrogation of notorious arms supplier Shakil alias Sherni, who was arrested earlier that week after an encounter with the Special Staff of Outer North district. The apprehended accused, identified as Ravi Mahor, was making illegal arms in a shop being used as a manufacturing unit.

“Several raw materials used in the manufacturing of arms were recovered such as barrels, triggers, the body of arms, etc along with Khairat machine, bits used in the machine, Bhatti, Okhli, gripper, etc were recovered,” Deputy Commissioner of Police, Outer North district, Brijendra Kumar Yadav had told IANS.

In the third operation, two notorious arms suppliers of the infamous Neeraj Bawana and Tillu Tajpuriya gang were arrested by the Special Cell. The accused were identified as Manish, 25, a resident of Bawana, Delhi and Shokeen, 38, a resident of Shamli, UP. It was learnt that the Delhi gangsters were procuring illegal arms and ammunition from these weapons suppliers. A total of 27 illegal firearms and live cartridges were recovered from the accused persons at the time of their arrests.

According to the police, in the past year, accused Manish has supplied more than 30 illegal firearms along with ammunition to different members of the Neeraj Bawana and Tillu gang. Both Neeraj Bawana and Sunil Mann alias Tillu Tajpuriya are dreaded gangsters currently lodged at different jails in the national capital.

In the latest operation, just one day ahead of Republic Day, the Special Cell said they have busted an interstate illegal arms racket and arrested its two key members. Notably, the racket was having illegal financial links with terror modules based abroad. The arrested accused were identified as Ravi Khan, 40, a resident of Prayagraj in Uttar Pradesh, and Rahul Singh Chhabda alias Rahul Sikhligar, 23, a resident of district Dhar in Madhya Pradesh. A total of 25 semi-automatic pistols were recovered, with their mobile phone and SIM cards used in the offense.

According to DCP, Special Cell, Rajiv Ranjan Singh, Chhabda and his associates were supplying illegal weapons in UP and Delhi NCR from the areas of Khargone, Dhar, Badwani, and Burhanpur in Madhya Pradesh. Chhabda used to procure illegal pistols from suppliers of his village and nearby areas and further supply the same to criminals of Delhi, UP, Haryana and Rajasthan directly himself or through co-accused Ravi Khan and others.

Upon further interrogation of the accused persons, it was also revealed that accused Chhabda was having links with some foreign-based modules, who were involved in subversive and Hawala activities. It was also revealed that he had received huge money from such modules through illegal channels.

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Crime

Explosives recovered in J&K’s Kishtwar

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A joint team of Indian Army and J&K Police has recovered commercial grade explosives from Kishtwar district, a statement said on Tuesday.

“A joint team of the security forces including the army and local police has recovered approximately 1.3 kg of commercial grade explosives in general area of Nagar Nala near Dul in district Kishtwar (J&K) on January 24, 2022.

“The recovery included 11 sticks of commercial grade explosives (each weighing 125 gms), one detonator and also the detonating wire,” a defence statement said.

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Crime

Raj man held with unaccounted Rs 1.88 crore cash, gold in K’taka

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A man from Rajasthan was arrested on Tuesday on charges of transporting unaccounted Rs 1.48 crore worth gold and Rs 40 lakh cash in Mangaluru, Karnataka.

During a preventive check ahead of Republic Day, personnel of the Railway Protection Force (RPF) attached to Mangaluru Junction Railway Station nabbed Mahendra Singh Rao, a resident of Udaipur, while he was travelling on the Mumbai-LTT-Ernakulam Duronto Express.

The 36-year-old accused has been handed over to the Government Railway Police, Mangaluru Central, along with the gold and money. The currency found is in the denominations of Rs 2,000 and Rs 500.

The man was caught when RPF personnel checked his bag and found the cash wrapped in newspapers.

The accused claimed that he received the gold and cash from a person in Mumbai referred by his employer Praveen Singh.

Singh allegedly owns Shubh Gold in Kozhikode. Further investigation is on.

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