Navi Mumbai: The Vashi police arrested a 29-year-old Army personnel from Vashi early this week and seized a country-made pistol and 10 live cartridges from his possession. Sonam Hotam Singh was apprehended when he was coming out from a bar in Vashi.
Acting on a tip-off, the Vashi police laid a trap near Magnet Bar in Juhu Gaon in Vashi on the afternoon of November 21, after receiving information that a man around 30 years of age would be coming there with a firearm. Around 3.10 pm, Mr Singh came out of the bar and when the police asked him why he was there, he did not give a coherent reply. Following this, the police frisked him and found the pistol and ammunition in his possession.
Mr Singh is a resident of Juhu Gaon in Sector 11, Vashi. “During the investigation, it was found that Star Model 81 Made in Munger was written over the pistol seized from him. It even had, inscribed in bold letters, 'Only for Army' on it,” deputy commissioner of police (Zone-I) Vivek Pansare said.
According to the police, Mr Singh has been attached to the Bhopal unit of the Army base and was recruited under the sports quota. However, he had not reported there for the past six months. “We have informed the Army and their officials are coming to Vashi police station for further investigation,” said senior police inspector Ramesh Chavan of Vashi police station. He added that the clear motive for his absence from the Army Cantonment and roaming with a pistol is not clear.
Meanwhile, a case has been registered under sections 25 and 3 of the Arms Act and sections 135 and 37(1) of the Maharashtra Police Act against Mr Singh.