Hazaribagh, Sept. 3: Acting on a tip-off, Sadar police yesterday recovered 1,500 detonators near Nagwa on NH-33, about 6km from the district headquarters.
Superintendent of police Manoj Kaushik said two bike-borne men were carrying the consignment in a jute bag. When they realised that they were being tailed by the police, they dumped the bag on the highway and tried to flee.
The police team seized the bag and found the detonators and also managed to catch the pillion rider later. However, he was released when it became apparent that he knew nothing about the consignment and had been roped in to just hold the bag.
The main culprit has been identified as Umesh Kumar Mehta of Padma and raids were on to nab him.
“We are trying to find out where these detonators came from. Preliminary investigations suggest that some of the detonators were meant for supply to extremist organisations,” Kaushik said.
Meanwhile, a National Investigation Agency (NIA) team today left Hazaribagh after interrogating arms unit head of Maoists in Bihar and Jharkhand Anil Yadav and arms supplier Praful Malakar.
Sources said the NIA team and district police jointly interrogated the two about the seizure of a M16 rifle and UK-made lightweight bullet proof vest from Hazaribagh.
Ministry of home affairs sources said this was not the first time M-16s had been seized from Jharkhand or Bihar.
The seizure, however, pointed to a connection to insurgents in the Northeast who routinely use the American assault rifles.