Mumbai: Criminals will be criminals, come death or destruction. At a time when there is a shortage of masks in the country, Mumbai Police seized three truckloads of 2.5 million illegally-hoarded masks, worth Rs 15 crore and busted a four-member gang. Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said here on Tuesday.
“The masks were being hoarded by the gang and were intended for sale in the black market. The seizure includes over 325,000 N-49 masks, plus others of different varieties,” Home Minister Anil Deshmukh told mediapersons on Tuesday.
He said that in the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, Maharashtra is facing a massive shortage of all types of masks and this seizure is expected to ease the problems somewhat.
The action came after a tip-off received by Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh last week on a gang hoarding the heavy-demand masks for exorbitant prices.
Senior Inspector of Police (Crime) Mahesh Desai set a trap by posing as a customer and finally managed to bust the gang by raiding locations in Mumbai and Thane.
While four persons have been arrested, police are on the lookout for two absconders, said Deshmukh.
So far, Maharashtra has recorded 101 COVID-19 positive cases besides three deaths including a 68-year-old Fillipino.