Three crucial Mumbai Crime Branch cells dismantled
Three important units of Mumbai Crime Branch, at their peak in the 2000s, were dismantled recently and the manpower shifted to other units of the force
Three important units of Mumbai Crime Branch, at their peak in the 2000s, were dismantled recently and the manpower shifted to other units of the force. Crime branch sources said personnel of the Anti-Robbery and Dacoity Cell, Anti-Motor Vehicle Theft, and Anti-Chain Snatching squads, which had the 20-odd personnel, have been asked to report to the Property Cell and Anti-Narcotics Cell with immediate effect. The order was issued by Joint Commissioner of Police Sanjay Saxena.
Pride of the force
The three units were the pride of the force at one point of time. They were headed by encounter specialists Praful Bhosale, now retired, Vijay Salaskar, who was slain in the 26/11 terror attack, and Jagdish Sail, who is heading unit III of the crime branch. The Anti-Robbery cell was formed in 2005 and was under Salaskar’s supervision till 2008. In 2010, Bhosale took over. The unit solved several high-profile robbery and murder cases.
The Anti-Motor Vehicle unit was formed in 2006, following a drastic rise in vehicle theft cases. It had a strong database and a detailed research background on the market of stolen vehicles across the country. Chain-snatching cases, the most serious concern of the force seven years ago, led to the formation of that unit. Due to limited manpower for such a widespread crime, it couldn’t yield results.