Mumbai Police launches crackdown to clean up crime in Bhandup, eight drug peddlers held

Aug 10, 2018, 07:10 IST | Anurag Kamble and Suraj Ojha

Mumbai Police's top brass draws up five-point programme, including identifying known offenders, sensitising youth, and extra patrolling

Mumbai Police launches crackdown to clean up crime in Bhandup, eight drug peddlers held
Cops intend to smoke out all supply channels of ganja, which is heavily peddled in Bhandup. Representation Pic

A day after shunting out the erstwhile senior police inspector in Bhandup, the top brass has started to crack its whip on criminals in the area. The police have formulated a five-point plan to weed out crime from the zone riddled with murders and gang activity. The Anti-Narcotics Cell (ANC) got off to a running start on Wednesday night, when they arrested eight drug peddlers.

Smoking out ganja dealers is just step one of Mumbai Police's five-point plan to clean up crime in Bhandup. However, this is one of the most important phases, as cannabis is heavily sold and used in the area.

The spot where a 17-year-old was killed in broad daylight last month, sparking the crackdown
The spot where a 17-year-old was killed in broad daylight last month, sparking the crackdown

On Wednesday night, a team from the Anti-Narcotics Cell (ANC) — led by inspector Shashank Shelke, assistant inspectors Vinod Shivadikar and Sachin Kadam, sub-inspector Charu Chavan and 25 other officers — arrested eight suspected drug dealers.

The accused were identified as Vijay Pundit, 26; Mustafa Shaikh, 21; Tayabai Wadekar, 65; Jasunda Gaikwad, 50; Shakti Pujara, 32; Uttam Kamble, 46; Kamlesh Gautam, 26; and Saipan Sangoli, 21. They were arrested in two separate raids at Darbanshah Kadri dargah in Khindi pada and at Tulshet pada. The cops seized 9.3 kg of ganja, worth Rs 1.86 lakh.

Senior inspector Ramesh Khade takes charge of Bhandup police station. Pics/Rajesh Gupta
Senior inspector Ramesh Khade takes charge of Bhandup police station. Pics/Rajesh Gupta

Deputy Commissioner ofPolice, ANC, Shivdeep Lande told mid-day, "On the basis of several inputs, we initiated a special drive and found eight ganja peddlers. They have been sent to police custody till August 13."

Purge criminals
Shaken by eight murders and 10 attempt to murder cases this year, the police are aggressively cracking down on criminals in the zone. The cops have prepared a list of history-sheeters and have started tracking them down. All criminals with open cases against them will be arrested and jailed with heavy sentences to keep them off the streets. Criminals who have committed serious offences (body offences like murder and rape) will be externed from Zone VII altogether.

Shivdeep Lande, DCP, Anti-Narcotics Cell
Shivdeep Lande, DCP, Anti-Narcotics Cell

The Bhandup police have asked neighbouring police stations and crime branch units to tap their informers and make arrests at the earliest.

Curb crime against women
The police will take stern action against sexual offences. In the past, crimes against women, such as molestations, have often flared up and resulted in more serious offences, including murder. The cops intend to focus on major colleges and junctions, where roadside Romeos often lay in wait for girls to prey on.

Teaching kids to say no
To ensure lower crime rates in the long run, the police will also start awareness campaigns across schools and colleges to teach the youth that crime doesn't pay. The cops seek to educate teenagers about the dangers of the criminal world and how it can put their career and life at risk. In particular, officers will advise youngsters to stay away from SRA projects — such construction works mean big money, and are the gateway to the underworld for many youths.

Thrice as much patrolling
Finally, the police will fulfil locals' requests to increase police presence in the area. Patrolling will be increased three-fold, with cops taking to the streets in three shifts daily.

Much of Bhandup is hilly terrain, teeming with illegal hutments, which makes it inaccessible. Hence, patrolling cops will head out on foot, to better penetrate the area.

Five-point plan
* Choking the drug flow
* Clearing out history-sheeters
* Stop crimes against women
* Educate kids against crime
* Increase patrolling

Also read: Mumbai: As Bhandup turns crime hub, senior cop sacked

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