Huge arms cache seized in Chennai outskirts

June 11th, 2008 - 12:51 am ICT by IANS  

Chennai, June 10 (IANS) One person was arrested after the seizure of a huge cache of arms in the northern outskirts here Tuesday, police said. World War II period ammunition and weapons, including bullets, rocket launchers, grenades and canon balls weighing over a tonne, were unearthed from the premises of an alloy factory in Gummidipoondi, situated some 20 km north of here, police sources said.

Manoj Kumar, 52, the general manager of Vinayaga Alloys and Steel Company was arrested under the Indian Arms Act and Explosive Act and remanded to police custody.

Ashok Kumar Jain, the factory’s owner is absconding, sources added.

The fact came to light Saturday when two Sri Lankan youths set of a blast in a well near the factory.

Tamil Nadu police’s ‘Q’ Branch officials said investigations were on to unearth further caches and to find out whether the metals were used in manufacture of armaments.

Seven Maoists had been arrested in April last year for manufacturing rocket launchers meant for use in Andhra Pradesh.

The then director general of police D. Mukherjee had denied intelligence failure.

A Sri Lankan Tamils’ refugee camp with over 950 inmates is located within a 1 km radius of the factory.

Meanwhile leader of the opposition J. Jayalalitha has alleged that the discovery “exposed shoddy policing” in the state.

More ammunition dumps are waiting to be uncovered in the state, she added.

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