Maharashtra police recovers firearms, explosives; three terror suspects arrested

Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) of Maharashtra police claimed to have recovered 20 crude bombs, two gelatin sticks, four electronic and 22 non-electronic detonators, and 150 gm explosive powder.

india Updated: Aug 13, 2018 23:25 IST
Maharashtra police,Anti-Terrorism Squad,Explosives
Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) raids the house of a Sanatan Sanstha member Vaibhav Raut at Nalasopara, in Palghar on Friday, August 10, 2018. The ATS, reportedly, seized huge quantity of explosives from his residence. (PTI)

The Maharashtra police on Monday claimed to have recovered five more country-made pistols and a large quantity of ammunition besides other material in the probe following the arrest of three men, including one belonging to a right-wing group, on terror charges.

Earlier, 11 country-made pistols with magazines, an airgun, 10 pistol barrels, six pistol magazines, six partially- made pistol bodies, three partially-made magazines and several parts of firerms were recovered, the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) of the Maharashtra police had said on Saturday.

With this, the number of pistols recovered so far in connection with the alleged terror plot has gone up to 16.

The ATS had on August 10 arrested Vaibhav Raut (40), who ran ‘Hindu Govansh Raksha Samiti’, a little- known pro-cow protection outfit, in Nallasopara.

After Raut’s arrest, the ATS had nabbed Sharad Kalaskar (25) and Sudhanwa Gondhalekar (39) in the raids in the Palghar and Pune districts, the police said.

The ATS had claimed to have recovered 20 crude bombs, two gelatin sticks, four electronic and 22 non-electronic detonators, 150 gm explosive powder and some other material, which according to the police, was to be used in carrying out blasts at various places in the state. ATS, in a statement issued on Monday, said that on the basis of the interrogation of the accused, five country-made pistols, 41 cartidges and scores of loose part of firearms were seized from Nallasopara.

The ATS has questioned 16 people from Nallasopara, Pune, Satara, Solapur and elsewhere in the state for suspected links to the three men, police had said.

Sleuths are probing if they were going to carry out any terrorist act ahead of the Independence Day or Eid festival next week, an ATS official had said.

The ATS also had said that while going through their mobile phone records and SIM card activities, it realised that some SIM cards were being used by multiple people.

ATS chief Atulchandra Kulkarni had said they would probe if the arrested men had any connection with the killings of rationalists Narendra Dabholkar and Govind Pansare and journalist Gauri Lankesh.The accused are in the ATS custody till August 18.

First Published: Aug 13, 2018 23:25 IST