The Panchmahals Special Operations Group (SOG) arrested two persons along with 10 kg explosives from Kundpada in Morwa Hadaf taluka of Panchmahals district on Friday.
According to the SOG and village sarpanch Sulaiman Shaikh,the explosives were meant for digging wells under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS).
SOG Inspector H D Wada,who raided the premises of one Mahendra Jetha Patel in the village said: We received a tip-off on November 17 about explosives coming to the village on a tempo. We seized ammonia nitrate; 2,216 gelatin sticks and 2,218 caps,which is considered Class II explosives,from his house. The company that has manufactured it is Super Shakti Chemicals in Bhilwada (Rajasthan). It seems the explosives were meant for blasting in the quarries. As per the Explosives Act,they can only be stored in the licensed warehouses. But Patel and his supplier from Bhilwada,Jasubhai Hirabhai Vanzara from Rajasthan,had stored the explosive in the house.
Shaikh said that instead of storing the explosives in the licensed warehouses,Vanzara and Patel had piled them up at the latters house. Patel and Vanzara have been arrested under Section 9 B of the Explosives Act.
Panchmahals Superintendent of Police J R Mothaliya said that though farmers regularly procure explosive for digging wells,Dahod police has over the last one year,nabbed at least eight people with six tractors of explosives meant for the same purpose. The supplier is a licensed holder but he was giving it to everyone in Kundpada village for the well digging purpose. It is a common practice of the farmers to use explosives for digging wells as the water table is really low, said Mothaliya. Shaikh added: There is water scarcity across Morwa Hadaf taluka. Before the real dry season starts,everybody wants a bore well. Some farmers know it is not right,others just want to finish the job as policemen do not come asking because it has been practised for the last several years in this region.
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