The newly-appointed Surat range IG Shamsher Singh has set up a team to probe the nexus of police with the bootleggers in the Surat hooch tragedy which claimed 23 lives within a span of a week since August 30.
Meanwhile, Surat IG Singh has already transferred a constable to the Dangs days after the incident. The team, headed by Surat rural police chief Nirlipt Rai, will probe the role of policemen, some of whom are believed to be hand in gloves with bootleggers.
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Singh said, “We will take out call details of the main accused, Ramu Yadav, and other bootleggers and try to find out their relations with the police men. We will also find out whether the policemen had contacted Yadav on phone and whether they helped him escape from Surat. Surat SP Nirlipt Rai will submit his reports in about a week and we will decide the next course of action accordingly.” Over 23 people, mostly migrants, died in Surat’s Vareli village in Palsana taluka after they consumed spurious liquor. Police have arrested over 14 persons in the case.
The ATS, which is probing the case, has booked them under section 65(A) of the Prohibition Act which means death for the accused found guilty. The accused who have been arrested include two women bootleggers — Padma Chaudhary and Rukmani Reddy — of Surat City. However, as the investigation was in progress, the state government transferred Surat DSP Mayur Chavda and Surat Range IG Narsimha Komar.
Nirlipt Rai has been posted as Surat DSP. After taking the charge as Surat range IG, Singh studied the occurrence and the status of the hooch tragedy and transferred Prakash Patil from Surat Local Crime branch to the Dangs district. Patil has spent over 17 years in local crime branch.