After three-day search, 26 live bullets found in Mantralaya dustbin

An MLA’s security officer had forgotten them in a toilet in the seat of power

It is one of the most sensitive and secure areas in Mumbai, but 26 live bullets lay unclaimed for three days at Mantralaya. The security officer of an MLA had forgotten them in a toilet. The Marine Drive police and Crime Branch recovered the bullets from a dustbin after a three-day search.

Officials said departmental action may be taken against the officer for the lapse. File pic
Officials said departmental action may be taken against the officer for the lapse. File pic

According to police officials, Navnath Naik (30) is a head constable with the Thane police and is part of a Thane-based MLA’s detail. Naik has been given a 9mm pistol for protection and several rounds of bullets. On August 7, Naik went to Mantralaya with the MLA.

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When the MLA was at work, Naik went to relieve himself at a toilet near gate number 7 of Mantralaya. He kept the pouch containing the bullets in the toilet, and left. Sources said that after the MLA’s work was done, they left for Thane.

In the evening, when they reached Thane, Naik remembered that he had forgotten the bullets in the toilet. The Marine Drive police were informed, but they could not find the bullets, and the Crime Branch was roped in. A police officer said, “It was very risky and dangerous.

There were quite a few live bullets. The constable was very careless. The local police and Crime Branch were looking for the 26 bullets.” Three days later, on August 10, a cleaner told cops that he had seen a pouch and had thrown it in a dustbin.

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The cops immediately looked in the dustbin and found all the 26 bullets in the pouch. No case was registered in the matter, however a station diary entry was made in the Marine Drive police station. Departmental action may be taken against constable Naik.

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