The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Wednesday filed a chargesheet against five persons in a case related to the seizure of a huge cache of electronic detonators and explosives in June 2022 in West Bengal, an official said.
According to an official, charges against one of the accused, Manoj Kumar, who had committed suicide in November 2022, have been abated in the chargesheet.
The Mohammad Bazar police station, in West Bengal’s Birbhum district, had initially registered the case on June 30, 2022, and a Special Task Force (STF) team of West Bengal was looking into the matter.
A day before lodging the FIT, the team seized 81,000 electric detonators from a vehicle on June 29, 2022, and arrested the vehicle’s driver, Ashish Keora.
After that, a series of searches were conducted at various locations, leading to more seizures.
Besides, another 2,525 electric detonators, 27,000 kg of ammonium nitrate and 1,625 kg gelatin sticks were seized during the search operations from an illegal godown belonging to another accused, Rintu Sk a.k.a. Muntaj Ali.
Further, 410 detonators were seized from the house of accused Mukesh Singh, while 45.75 kg gelatin sticks and 1,200 electric detonators were recovered from the possession of accused Moktar Khan a.k.a. Imran.
Investigations by the NIA, which took over the case on September 20, 2022, revealed that all the accused, including Asish Keora, Rintu Sk a.k.a. Muntaj Ali, Mukesh Singh, Moktar Khan a.k.a. Imran and (late) Manoj Kumar a.k.a. Manoj Modi had entered a criminal conspiracy to supply explosive materials and detonators to persons involved in illegal mining.
While the charges for the offences committed by Manoj Kumar have been abated following his suicide, Asish Keora, Rintu Sk, Mukesh Singh and Moktar Khan have been chargesheeted under Sections 120B, 201 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code and Sections 4 and 5 of the Explosive Substances Act.
(The story has been published via a syndicated feed.)