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Sharmili Mallick

Cuttack: A major illegal firearm smuggling racket which operated out of the Millennium City was busted by the Commissionerate Police at Gurukhetra field near Kaliaboda mutt of Cuttack city on Tuesday.

Seven persons, including the two kingpins of the racket who are notorious criminals, have been rounded up.

Twin City Police Commissioner Soumendra Priyadarshi on Wednesday said that seven guns including four 7.65 mm pistols and three 9 mm pistols and 65 live ammunition, three vehicles and six mobile phones have been recovered from the conduits of the racket so far.

The arrested kingpins of the racket have been identified as Bijay Nayak, a notorious history sheeter from Kendrapara district and his aide Jagannath Das alias Jaga of Cuttack. "Bijay and Jaga are the kingpins of the illegal arms dealing syndicate," said the Police Commissioner.

Priyadarshi said Bijay Samal, Pyarimohan Das alisa Pintu of Tirtol area in Jagatsinghpur district, Tushar Khuntia alias Silu Mukhtar Shah alias Bhalu and Srinath Rout are the other members of the syndicate.

Bijay, Priyadarshi said, was an accused in the sensational Sheikh Suleiman murder case in 2009. He was also an associate of gangster Tito. Bijay had been granted bail in the murder case recently.

The commissioner said following tip off from a reliable source about the presence of the gun runners near Gurukhetra field, a joint police team under the supervision of Cuttack DCP Prateek Singh, Zone 1 ACP Amarendra Panda and Chauliaganj Police Station IIC conducted raids at Gurukhetra field yesterday and arrested the seven persons.

At least 10 cases are pending against Bijay at several police stations in Kendrapara and 1 case in Mancheswar police station at Bhubaneswar. Similarly, 15 cases are pending against Jaga in Cuttack, Kendrapara, Jagatsinghpur and Jajpur police station

A total of 11 cases are pending against Pintu in Tirtol and Paradip. Five cases had been registered against Srinath in Cuttack and Jagatsinghpur. while two cases are pending against Bhalu, Silu is facing charge in 3 cases, Priyadarshi added.

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