In a prize catch for the newly created Mira Bhayandar-Vasai Virar (MBVV) Police Commissionerate, a huge consignment of banned gutkha products worth more than Rs 49 lakh was seized from a godown in Kashimira on Tuesday evening. Acting on a tip off, a police team, led by API Mahendra Bhamre and ASI Rajesh Pansare, under the instructions of Senior Police Inspector Sanjay Hazare, swooped down on a godown located in Chena village in Kashimira and apprehended three people who were found to be unloading gunny bags stashed with tobacco laced gutka sachets from a container truck at around 4:30 pm on Tuesday. In addition to this, one pick up van was also found to be carrying similar gunny bags.
The market value of the seized consignment has been pegged at more than Rs 49 lakh in the local market. The arrested accused have been identified as Jhafar Husaain Khan (godown owner), 23, Sudam Javre (driver), 24, and Navnath Baarse (cleaner), 24. Investigations revealed that the consignment originated from a village bordering Karnataka and the accused attempted transporting it in a container truck to hoodwink the law enforcing agencies.
However, the main beneficiaries, including the Pune-based supplier and the consignee who is a trader from Dahisar, are still at large missing. It has been alleged that the quantity and value of the actual consignment was much higher. However, the investigating team termed the charges as baseless, as the entire consignment along with both the vehicles valued at around Rs 60 lakh was impounded.
Meanwhile, an offence under the relevant sections of the IPC and regulations of the Food Safety and Standards (Prohibition and Restrictions on Sales) Regulations has been registered against the trio who have been remanded to custody.