KOCHI: Anseer, aka Perumbavoor Anas, 36, who operates from Perumbavoor, is on the most wanted list of Ernakulam Rural police. Anas of Vengola used to run a network of criminals in Ernakulam and his steady rise in the underworld hierarchy led to a rival group bringing in a quotation gang from Tamil Nadu to bump him off. However, he was jailed under the Kerala Anti-social Activities (Prevention) Act (KAAPA). Though he was released on bail, he could not involve in criminal activities as had to execute a bond agreeing not to indulge in any such activities.
The stringent legal actions initiated by the Ernakulam Rural police under KAAPA have put many notorious gangsters such as Anas behind bars and helped bring down the goon menace to a great extent. It was after the gruesome murder of gang leader Binoy, aka Gillappi, in Athani near Nedumbassery in 2019 that the Ernakulam Rural police launched ‘Operation Dark Hunt’, a special drive against goondas, drug peddlers, and anti-social elements.
The murder happened in full public view around 8pm in front of a bar at Athani junction. Visuals from a CCTV camera clearly showed a gang, which came in a car, hacking Binoy multiple times and mutilating his face. One of the gang members hacked Binoy till he died by sitting on him. It was clear that a gang rivalry was behind the attack and several gangs were active in the rural area. This prompted the police to launch ‘Operation Dark Hunt’ to round up the anti-social elements.
Since the drive was launched in 2019, 32 notorious gangsters, including Perumbavoor Anas; habitual offenders Kara Ratheesh, aka Ratheesh; Grintesh, aka Indava; and serial thief Kandelakudiyil Suresh, aka ‘Dracula’ Suresh, were arrested invoking KAAPA, while 33 persons were deported from the district and legal actions initiated against 73 criminals. Perhaps, the Ernakulam Rural police are top in invoking KAAPA against the goons. Those involved in dreadful acts affecting public peace and tranquillity were arrested under relevant sections of the IPC, Arms Act, NDPS Act and Explosive Substances Act.
“Operation Dark Hunt has been very effective in bringing down goonda activities in the rural police district despite a few lone incidents,” said Rural SP K Karthick. The station house officer (SHO) concerned recommends the invocation of KAAPA against a person through the DySP concerned who then forward it to the district police chief, who is the sponsoring authority. The SP, in turn, forwards it to the district collector.
The goons have to execute a bond undertaking that they would not indulge in criminal activities while they are out on bail. If the bond provisions are flouted, the police will arrest the person. “The police chiefs of Ernakulam rural, Kottayam, Idukki and Alappuzha districts have been directed to invoke relevant sections of KAAPA against those hindering the peaceful life of the public, habitual offenders, drug peddling and those involved in anti-social activities,” said Neeraj Kumar Gupta, Ernakulam Range DIG.