Thane,Sep 2 (PTI) Five members of an inter-state gang involved in the sale of used hand gloves sourced from several hospitals in the country during the COVID-19 pandemic, have been arrested from different places, including Delhi, a top police official from Navi Mumbai said on Wednesday.
The first arrest in the case was made from Navi Mumbai on August 18 and the 'mastermind' of the racket was held from Delhi on August 29, Navi Mumbai Police Commissioner Sanjay Kumar said in a press conference.
Repacked hand gloves and other equipment, collectively worth around Rs 50.10 lakh, have been seized during the multi-state operation, he said.
'Police had got a tip-off that some persons were selling hand gloves that were earlier used by doctors and others, by cleaning and repacking them. Accordingly, the crime branch conducted a raid at Pawane MIDC in Navi Mumbai on August 18,' he said.
The police team found around 15 youths working at the godown owned by one Prashant Surve. The workers washed the used hand gloves with detergent liquids, sanitizers and other chemicals. They were then dried with the help of a dryer and blower and repacked for sale, the commissioner added.
Surve was arrested and a case was registered at the Turbhe police station.
'During his interrogation, Surve said he had procured the glovesfrom Bhiwandi in Thane district and Waluj MIDC in Aurangabad. Accordingly, raids were conducted at these places.
Two owners of a godown in Bhiwandi, Vipul Shah and Nazim Khan, were arrested, while Shaikh Afroz Shaikh Inayat, was held from Aurangabad,' he added.
Based on the information provided by them, the police raided a godown in Bengaluru on August 23 and seized 10 tonnes of unprocessed gloves, he said.
'However, the owner of the godown is yet to be arrested and the police are on the lookout,' Kumar added.
The investigation revealed that one Tarun Laxmandas Ramnani, who hails from Mulund in Mumbai, had purchased the refurbished gloves from Surve. Ramnani, the prime accused, was arrested from Delhi on August 29, the police commissioner said.
'The police are on the lookout for a couple involved in the racket. A probe team has also been sent to Bengaluru and Cochin,' he added.
'The used hand glovee had been procured from hospitals around the country, including Bangalore, Hyderabad and Cochin,' he said, adding that total 48 tonnes of gloves, two washing machines, two dryers and one blower, collectively worth Rs 50,10,830, have been seized. PTI COR NP NP