Three persons were arrested and another was detained on Tuesday after a car with 5,000 rounds of.315 cartridges, manufactured in an ordnance factory, was intercepted in the metropolis.
The trio -- Dilip Mishra, Rajesh Kumar Sharma and Ram Parvesh Prasad -- were arrested from New Market area in central Kolkata, Additional Commissioner of Police, Special Task Force, Rajeev Kumar said.
The man detained, identified as Mahesh Kumar Singh, was also picked up from the same area, Kumar said, adding Singh owned a licenced gun shop near Patna railway station. The ammunition was to be handed over to Dilip Mishra, originally a resident of Bihar, but now staying in Kolkata, he said.
The ACP said the cartridges were manufactured at Indian Ordnance Factory at Khirka in Pune in March this year. Asked whether the ammunition was meant for Maoists, Kumar said "the possibility cannot be discounted." The ammunition was discovered after the car with Mishra, Sharma and Prasad were stopped by a traffic sergeant on a motorcycle near the Shova Bazar Metro station on Monday for jumping a red light. When the sergeant asked for the papers, one of them alighted, while the other two sped off with the car, which had a Bihar registration plate. The sergeant chased them and managed to stop the car, but the two occupants escaped as also the man earlier stopped by him. The sergeant discovered the huge quantity of ammunition when he examined the car, following which the Special Task Force was called in.
The incident came two days after a police constable belonging to Howrah Police Lines was arrested in Burdwan town for supplying explosives to Maoists. Earlier in 2003, 25,000 rounds of ammunition meant for militants in Kashmir and those operating in North East, were seized from an abandoned truck in the metropolis.