NIA raids LJP leader’s houses in 4 cities in Bihar
According to the NIA, a large number of prohibited weapons, including of AK series, were stolen and smuggled out of the Central Ordnance Depot (COD) in Jabalpur and supplied to various Naxal outfits and criminal gangs.Updated: Jun 21, 2019 08:58 IST
Sleuths of theNational Investigation Agency (NIA) on Thursday conducted simultaneous raids at 12 locations in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, including at residences of former MLC and LJP leader Hulas Pandey and his brother Santosh Pandey in Patna, Buxar, Rohtas and and Bhojpur districts, in connection with the recovery of AK-47 rifles from Munger last year.
According to the NIA, a large number of prohibited weapons, including of AK series, were stolen and smuggled out of the Central Ordnance Depot (COD) in Jabalpur and supplied to various Naxal outfits and criminal gangs.
On September 7 last year, the Munger police had registered a case against Shamsher Alam and his sister Rizwana Begum following the recovery of AK-47s and other weapons from her house. The case was later handed over to the NIA on October 5.
On the basis of evidence collected during the investigation, searches were conducted on Thursday in the houses of Hulas Pandey and his close associates at different places at Buxar, Bhojpur, Rohtas, Varanasi and Patna, a press release from NIA’s IG-cum-PRO Alok Mittal said.
During the searches, a rifle, cartridges, Rs 29 lakh in cash, four laptops, five hard disks, 12 pen drives, a computer, 12 mobile phones, documents and bank details were seized, the release said.
Santosh has a sprawling bungalow on Dr B Bhattacharya Road in Patna while Hulas has his own house in Patel Nagar in Patna. Both also have their own houses at Charitarvan in Buxar.
According to an NIA official, raids were also carried out at the residence of their relatives at Tilath village in Bhojpur.
Hulas and Santosh are brothers of former JD (U) MLA MLA Nagendra Kumar Pandey alias Sunil Pandey.
Hulas and Sunil have strongmen image and are in active politics while Santosh has a construction business.
NIA teams were accompanied by the district police and CRPF personnel.
At the time of the raids at their houses in Patna, Hulas and Santosh were present. The NIA team reportedly took them under custody and were interrogating them.
When contacted, Sunil Pandey said he had nothing to do with the NIA raids at the residences of his brothers and that they lived separately.
The NIA has arrested/remanded 15 accused in the arms recovery case so far and charge-sheeted nine of them, including alleged kingpin Purushottam Lal Rajak, Suresh Thakur, Imran Alam and Niyajul Rahman.
A total of 22 AK rifles, smuggled from COD, Jabalpur, had already been recovered by the then Munger SP Babu Ram.
Earlier, in June 2013, the SIT probing the sensational murder of Ranveer Sena chief Barmeshwar Mukhiya had interrogated Hulas at his residence in Patna after Mukhia’s son Indubhushan alleged the ruling party MLC and his brother had masterminded the murder.
First Published: Jun 21, 2019 00:54 IST