21 arrested for drugging, looting train passengers

April 11th, 2009 - 5:33 pm ICT by IANS  

Agra, April 11 (IANS) They would loot rail passengers after drugging them with poison-coated biscuits and other eatables. More than 20 ‘friendly poison peddlers’ were arrested in a joint operation by railway and Agra police here.
Superintendent of Police of General Railway Police (GRP) Upendra Agrawal said that 21 people, including women, were nabbed Friday. The police said in the past six months there have been hundreds of cases of drugging and looting passengers between Agra, Aligarh, Etawah and Jaipur sections.

“Most victims were labourers from eastern India,” said Agrawal.

“An 18-year-old youth confessed that their group was involved in looting rail passengers after drugging them with biscuits and other eatables,” Agrawal told reporters.

He said the men revealed that they would target people travelling in the general compartments and fool them with an offer of some drug-coated eatables that sent the victims to sound sleep.

“Once the passengers dozed off, the gang members collected all the money and valuables from their possession and got down at the nearest stop,” Agrawal said.

Police teams were involved in tracking suspicious looking characters on the platforms since Friday morning. By evening more than 20 were in police custody, including a gang of four specialising in lifting luggage of passengers.

Agrawal said seven of those arrested are from a single family of Etawah.

The joint operation was carried out simultaneously in Tundla, Firozabad and Agra. The people were arrested with drugs, medicines and mobile phones.

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