Lucknow/New Delhi, Oct. 8: The Uttar Pradesh government has warned small-scale units in Ghaziabad, Meerut and Bulandshar they will be prosecuted if any war ammunition like shells, rockets or live explosive substances is found on their premises.
'We have issued a specific warning to the units in western Uttar Pradesh dealing in scrap from West Asian countries that they would be liable for prosecution if new war materials are found either in their godowns or in the trucks reaching their plants,' principal home secretary Aloke Sinha said today.
In Delhi, the BJP today demanded a probe into the recovery of live rocket shells by the Army and National Security Guard from scrap metal factories across Uttar Pradesh. They were pressed into sifting operations after an explosion at a metal scrap factory in Ghaziabad on September 30 killed 10 people and injured 30.
BJP spokesman Arun Jaitley said today: 'In a country affected by terrorism, it (the recovery of the shells) has posed a question of internal security. We want to know whether it is happening because of some people's economic or commercial interest or was it a part of strategy to spread terror. The Centre should probe and inquire into it with all its agencies. Once it gets the report, proper action should be taken.'
Sinha said in Lucknow that there is a sense of fear in Ghaziabad over shells that litter the roadsides due to distress dumping by factories after last week's explosion near Bhushan Steel and Strips Limited in Ghaziabad. The blast occurred when scrap was being offloaded near the factory. Later, live shells were found in the scrap consignments.
Police today seized 18 shells 'looking like rockets' from Ghaziabad while eight more were found at Baghpat.
Eighteen similar rocket shells were found at Azadnagar in Aligarh district on Wednesday morning. 'Some of the shells were 1.5 feet long while others were 2.5 feet,' said Binod Yadav, inspector at Harduaganj police station.