Sword haul in Nalanda rings alarm

The Nalanda district police seized more than 500 swords and arrested two persons during a raid ahead of Muharram.

By Ramashankar in Patna
  • Published 12.09.18

Patna: The Nalanda district police seized more than 500 swords and arrested two persons during a raid ahead of Muharram.

The swords were stocked in two shops under the jurisdiction of Laheri police station in chief minister Nitish Kumar's home district.

Nalanda superintendent of police (SP) Sudhir Kumar Porika said the cops carried out raids on Monday evening following reports that swords were being sold at shops in the town.

A team led by sub-divisional officer Janardan Prasad Agarwal and sub-divisional police officer Nishit Priya raided the shops and seized 502 swords and daggers.

The SP said that while 340 swords and daggers were seized from a shop owned by a man named Sunil Kumar Verma, 162 swords were found from the shop of Munshi Singh.

Both shop owners were arrested and booked under sections of the Arms Act.

A complaint was lodged with the Laheri police station on the statement of executive magistrate Mohammad Ghulam Ansari.

"The police operation was part of an exercise to review the law and order situation in the district ahead of Muharram," SP Porika said.

"The district is considered sensitive from the security point of view and had earlier incidents of communal flare-up as well. The senior police officials at the police headquarters have been informed about the seizure of the swords in large numbers"

Nalanda was among the nine Bihar districts that witnessed communal flare-ups before and during Ram Navami this year.

However, there was no major incident. Neighbouring Nawada, identified as a super sensitive, remained crippled for several days due to disturbances.

There were districts where such arms were sold in the open sometimes even at the village haats (fairs).

More than 30,000 religious processions were taken in Bihar out between October 2017 and April 2018.

Aurangabad, Bhagalpur, Samastipur, Nawada, Bhojpur and Saran were the worst hit districts.

Display of swords and daggers had become a common sight in the state.

A non-government organisation had also claimed that consignments of swords were booked online and pointed a finger saffron organisations.

"The seizure of swords from Naland is the tip of an iceberg," said a senior officer posted at the state police headquarters.