3 nailed for smuggling opium in ambulance in Mohali: News Kidda

Tribune News Service

Mohali, July 24

This looks like it came straight out of a Bollywood cauldron – Members of an inter-state gang who smuggled 8kg of opium in a pillow under the head of the patient in a speeding ambulance were caught by a police force at the Dappar toll booth.

The suspects in police custody in Mohali on Sunday. Stand photo: Vicky

When the police gave the signal to stop last night, the smugglers pretended to be on their way to a hospital. One of them was on a stretcher pretending to be a patient. When the police noticed that there was no oxygen bottle and first aid kit in the ambulance, they searched the vehicle thoroughly. They found 8 kg of opium hidden in the pillow placed under the head of the ‘patient’.

The gang members said they had each smuggled about 10kg of opium 10 times using the same modus operandi, police said.

The suspects, identified as Rampur (UP) resident Ravi Srivastav (28), Nayagaon resident Harinder Sharma (47) and Khudda Ali Sher resident Ankush (27), were arrested yesterday under the NDPS Act by Lalru police.

Mohali SSP Vivek S Soni said the suspects will appear in court and their police arrest will be requested. “They brought the narcotics out of Bareilly. More revelations will follow. The investigation is ongoing,” he said.

Deputy Inspector General of Police, Ropar Range, Gurpreet Singh Bhullar said he would discuss the matter with the relevant authorities. “The suspect had bought a second-hand ambulance and started using it for drug smuggling,” he said.

Bhullar said he also asked all SSPs in the range to hold a meeting with the representatives of all hospitals and NGOs in their respective districts and get a list of ambulances assigned to them. He also suggested using a special beacon atop ambulances, which could indicate whether there was a patient in the ambulance or not.

Drug catch since April 1

On the recovered drugs in its range since April 1, 2022, Deputy Inspector General of Police, Ropar Range, Gurpreet Singh Bhullar said they contained a total of 2.41 kg of heroin, 20.42 kg of opium, 2.10 quintals of papaya difference, 200 grams had recovered of charas, 7.29 kg of ganja, 40,945 injections of intoxicants, 8,70,590 intoxicating tablets in addition to Rs 8.08 lakh drug money. The police have registered 211 FIRs and arrested 307 suspects. Police also arrested 11 declared offenders, he added.

crime file

  • Drugs brought from Bareilly
  • All suspects local residents
  • Bought a used car
  • More revelations likely

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