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5 held, record quantity of illicit liquor seized by Punjab cops - Chandigarh News

Chandigarh, June 12 (IANS) Cracking down on the inter-state smuggling and sale of illicit liquor, Ropar Police in Punjab on Friday arrested five people and seized what it called the "biggest ever" quantity of material for illicit liquor in a 10-hour operation in forested terrain in Himachal Pradesh villages.

by IANS | Updated Jun 12, 2020 11:53 AM

5 held, record quantity of illicit liquor seized by Punjab cops - Chandigarh News

Officials said seven working stills and two lakh kg of 'lahan' -- from which illicit liquor is distilled after fermentation -- were seized from a forest area with thorny bushes and seasonal rivulets.

The police had to cut through dense and thorny undergrowth to get to the spot, said Ropar Senior Superintendent of Police Swapan Sharma, adding the operation was carried out jointly with Himachal Police.

Twenty-two police teams, comprising seven police personnel each, participated in the operation.

The teams cordoned off the entire area around the villages, located about two km from the Punjab border, said Sharma, adding the search operation covered a six-km stretch along the inter-state border.

Investigations were in progress to trace the links of the accused across Punjab and Himachal Pradesh, Sharma said.

The seizure came amid statewide efforts to check sale in illicit liquor, as well as smuggling of liquor from across the state's borders.

Sharma said two Himachal villages, Majri and Dabt, along with the area around them are notorious for liquor and drug smuggling.

The smugglers take advantage of the forest cover and the lack of access in the tough terrain to sneak from Himachal Pradesh into Punjab with contraband.

In five years, 26 cases in Punjab and 38 cases in Himachal have been registered against people hailing from these areas, the police said.

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