Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - NAVI MUMBAI - Pranab Jy­oti Bhuyan [email protected]­dus­tan­

NAVI MUM­BAI: Three mem­bers of a gang, who al­legedly looted sev­eral peo­ple trav­el­ling on the Mum­baiPune Ex­press­way in the last cou­ple of months, were ar­rested by the Nerul po­lice on Wed­nes­day.

Ac­cord­ing to t he po­lice, Javed Shaikh, 32, a res­i­dent of Am­ber­nath, Ab­dulla Shaikh, 29, a res­i­dent of Trom­bay, and Mu­jibul Khan, 20, a res­i­dent of Go­vandi, would ask for lift from pri­vate ve­hi­cles ply­ing on the ex­press­way. Nor­mally, they would stop ve­hi­cles that had only a driver in­side. Once in­side, they would at­tack the driver at an iso­lated place and then run away with the ve­hi­cle and the valu­ables they found on the driver.

“The gang at­tacked and robbed a man of his car near the Tale­gon toll naka us­ing the same modus operandi on Jan­uary 2. We had been in­ves­ti­gat­ing the case that had been reg­is­tered with the Nerul po­lice sta­tion,” said Sha­haji Umap, deputy com­mis­sioner of po­lice (zone 1).

“On Tues­day, we re­ceived a tip-off that a few sus­pi­cious peo­ple were com­ing along the SionPan­vel high­way in a car. We laid a trap and ar­rested all three. They were trav­el­ling in the same car, which they had robbed in Jan­uary. We have seized it,” Umap said.

The po­lice have re­cov­ered one coun­try-made pis­tol, a few live car­tridges, three chop­pers, two mon­key caps, ny­lon ropes, three mo­bile phones and some cash from their pos­ses­sion. “The gang com­mit­ted sim­i­lar crimes at other places in the state, in­clud­ing Pune. They have con­fessed to the crimes. We are now try­ing to find out if more peo­ple were in­volved in the racket,” Umap said.

The po­lice have booked the three un­der sec­tions 392 and 34 of the In­dian Pe­nal Code (IPC) and sec­tion 3 and 25 of the In­dian Arms Act.

“We ap­peal to city res­i­dents not to of­fer lifts to uniden­ti­fied peo­ple. Like­wise, peo­ple should not travel in ran­dom ve­hi­cles. Opt for the state- run buses in­stead,” Umap said.

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