Mira-Bhayandar: Ahead of Christmas and new year festivities, the excise department has launched a massive crackdown against bootleggers and the notorious liquor mafia in Thane district. As per information, the excise department has conducted raids and registered as many as 277 offences under the relevant sections of the Bombay Prohibition Act in just three weeks between Dec 1 and Dec 21. The offences include bootlegging, manufacturing of illicit booze (haath-bhatti) and breach cases related to the unauthorised sale of Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) and country liquor by licensed vending establishments in the district.
“Our personnel remain on their toes all year round. However, the vigilance is further intensified ahead of the new year to keep a check on smuggling, bootlegging, and illegal breweries, and to ensure that no rules are breached by licensed vending establishments,” Excise Superintendent Nilesh Sangade said. While a total of 181 people were booked and arrested, the excise team and flying squads impounded 11 vehicles which were used by the accused to ferry or smuggle liquor in an illegal manner. The flying squad topped the list with 62 cases and 31 arrests, while officials in Mira Road and Bhayandar registered 34 cases and apprehended 34 people.
Apart from equipment, a huge quantity of ingredients including fermented jaggery wash, chemicals and illicitly brewed liquor worth more than Rs78.62 lakh was seized by the excise department. Camera-mounted drones and fibre boats provided by the district administration proved to be valuable assets for the excise personnel in conducting successful raids.
1,976 cases, 1,327 arrests in 8 months
The excise department registered 1,976 cases and arrested 1,327 people under relevant sections of the Bombay Prohibition Act in eight months between Apr and Nov 2022. A total of 88 vehicles and consignments of illicit liquor and ingredients, amounting to Rs7.49 crore were seized during the period.
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