Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Supplier to Naxals held, huge arms cache seized

27 Jan 2009, 0319 hrs IST, Caesar Mandal , TNN


KOLKATA: Ashok Mondol has been running an arms smuggling racket for the last five years and supplying arms to warring groups in Nandigram and
Maoists.

Acting on revelations made by Mondol and his five aides, arrested from Malda on Saturday, CID’s special operation group officials on Sunday raided a trader’s house at Baguiati in northern fringes of Kolkata and recovered a huge cache of arms — over 6,000 rounds of live cartridges of various types, 25 guns, including rifles, sten guns, pipeguns and muskets, and bullet-proof jackets. Mondol had taken the help of fish trader Anupam

Chowdhury, from whose house the arms were recovered, to store the arms, sources said.

The CID officials — probing whether the arms were meant to carry out terror strikes in Kolkata or elsewhere — on Monday said some staff of ordnance factories might also be involved in the racket. "Mondal and his aides used to supply sophisticated rifles manufactured at ordnance factories in Bengal to warring groups in Nandigram. They used to take the arms to Nandigram in ambulances and through the river route. We’ve seized three rifles made at the ordnance factories," said a CID officer.

The CID officials also said the consignment might have been meant for Maoists as criminals in West Bengal normally didn’t use bullet-proof jackets. "The jackets have come from Uttar Pradesh," a senior CID officer said.

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