After the hooch tragedy that claimed 86 lives in Punjab, the Ludhiana police on Sunday said that they busted an illicit liquor manufacturing racket and recovered more than 2 lakh litres of lahan (fruit of mahua tree used in making liquor), 1,612 litres of illicit liquor and 4,606 litres of English wine between May 18 and August 1.
A press note released by the Police Commissioner's Office of Ludhiana said that the police had launched a special drive two months ago to take strict action against illicit liquor, its distillation, and subsequent smuggling across state districts and their ultimate sale.
This special drive was conducted by an Anti-Smuggling Cell that was dedicatedly constituted two months ago to take charge of this mission. The cell consists of 30 police personnel, working full time to look into this issue of illegal alcohol distillation and smuggling across the state.
The document also revealed that more than 270 FIRs were registered during this period of mid- May to early- August with the arrest of 301 smugglers.
Other sources also revealed that the Anti-Smuggling Cell also destroyed nearly 50,000 litres of lahan and recovered one drum, plastic cans and utensils used for making illicit liquor, from near the Sutlej river. The Ladhowal police station in Ludhiana district registered an FIR on Sunday against 12 people in connection to these.
Rakesh Agrawal, the Commissioner of Police of Ludhiana city, warned his officers of complacency, compliance or concert with any illegal activities in connection to the smuggling and sale of illegal alcohol would be dealt with seriously.