Pune: In a major combing operation conducted prior to upcoming Republic Day celebration, the city police have caught 709 criminals and arrested 37 of them (including three minors) for allegedly carrying illegal weapons.
The action was taken on intervening night of Friday and Saturday to curb illegal activities of the criminals and take preventive action against them, police said.
Accordingly, the raids were carried out at hotels, lodges, dhabas, ST bus stands, railway stations and public places.
Under this special action, police have detained 709 criminals out of 3,383 checked and arrested 37 people for illegally possessing sharp weapons and seized 27 sickles, knives, axes and swords from them, police said and informed that among those are absconding accused.
In another action on illegal hookah parlours in the city, police conducted a raid on a hookah parlour in Kondhwa area of the city and arrested hotel owner Prakash Singh Narsing Chauhan (39) in this connection.
In another action, two people — Chand Sheikh and Asif Atiq Menon — were arrested for allegedly selling ganja in the Marketyard and Kondhwa areas of the city, respectively, and about two kg of ganja was recovered from Sheikh.
Also, Anti-Extortion Squad of the city police seized gutka worth Rs 4.22 lakh in a raid on a house at Wadarwadi area of Shivajinagar and arrested one Suresh Kaladhar in this connection, sources added.