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Crackers seized

The police raided a godown in a residential area of Jamshedpur for stocking crackers in violation of the law on Monday and seized fireworks initially estimated to be worth over Rs 1.5 lakh.

Paban Mangatia, a resident of Jugsalai and a licensed cracker vendor, was using the godown at the moderately-populated locality on Slag Road in Golmuri police station area, in violation of the provisions of Indian Explosives Act that bars storage of incendiary items in residential areas.

Sub-divisional officer Dhalbhum Subodh Kumar Prasad said they seized a tractor-load of crackers from the house.

“Though Mangotia showed a trade license, it wasn’t meant for the Slag Road area. The police are working towards establishing the exact value of the crackers seized,” he said.

Deputy superintendent of police (city) K.N. Chowdhury, who was present during the raid, said they were now trying to ascertain the exact volume of crackers that Mangotia had already sold to customers. “We are examining the license and also the volume of crackers. We will arrest him only after verifying details,” he said.

Every year, the SDO earmarks areas where temporary godowns are set up for storing and selling crackers and licenses are issued accordingly.

This year, too, licensed cracker marts have come up at G-Town Ground in Bistupur, Aam Bagaan in Sakchi, Kadma Market and Jugsalai.

Jugsalia is the largest cracker market in the city — fireworks worth over Rs 50 crore are sold during Diwali. In fact, crackers are available there all year round.