In a major development, the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) has arrested two persons in possession of 7 kg of uranium—a highly explosive and radioactive material dangerous for human life. The seized uranium is estimated to be worth over Rs 21 crore.
Interestingly, the two nabbed with the radioactive material had also got it tested at a private lab to ascertain its purity. Now, the lab that carried out the test has also come under the scanner of the investigation agency. A case under the Atomic Energy Act has been registered against the duo.
The agency is carrying out the investigation based on a complaint filed by an officer of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) in Mumbai.
According to media reports, information was received by police on February 14 that a person named Jigar Pandya, a resident of Thane, was going to illegally sell pieces of uranium. Thereafter, a trap was laid by the ATS and Jigar Pandya was apprehended. Upon inquiry, it was found that these pieces of uranium were given to Jigar Pandya by a certain Abu Tahir, a resident of Mankhurd.
Following the information, the Nagpada unit officers and staff swung into action and immediately reached the Kurla Scrap Association, Mankhurd, in Mumbai and nabbed Abu Tahir.
Natural uranium seized
After seizing the uranium, it was sent to BARC in Mumbai for its analysis. A report was received that the seized substance is natural uranium, which is highly radioactive and dangerous.
Normal functioning of the kidney, brain, liver, heart and other systems can be affected by uranium exposure, because, besides being radioactive, uranium is a toxic metal. Uranium is used in nuclear power plants and nuclear weapons.
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