GPS helps Kerala man find stolen car in TN's Perambalur, bust ganja racket

The car, however, went missing on March 2. Meanwhile, Askar said he unsuccessfully tried tracking down his vehicle using the GPS device that was installed in the car.
The stolen car was used to smuggle 130 kg of ganja into the state from AP
The stolen car was used to smuggle 130 kg of ganja into the state from AP(Photo | Express)

PERAMBALUR: A GPS device installed in a car that suddenly started working again two months after the vehicle was reported stolen not only enabled its owner from Kerala to get it back on Saturday but also led the Perambalur police to bust a ganja racket.

After a chase, the police nabbed five of the six passengers who allegedly were using the stolen vehicle to smuggle about 150 kg of ganja into the state from Andhra Pradesh. According to sources, U Askar (32) of Thrissur district in Kerala purchased the seven-seater car on January 23, 2024.

Towards the end of February, he handed over the car to his friend K Nibish (38), also from Thrissur, for his needs. The car, however, went missing on March 2 following which Askar lodged a complaint with the Thrissur East Police. Meanwhile, Askar said he unsuccessfully tried tracking down his vehicle using the GPS device that was installed in the car.

On Friday, it suddenly started working again. “I got a message from it that the car was in Andhra Pradesh. Then I along with my friends left Thrissur in a car and started chasing those who were using mine. I later came to know through the device that the car had entered Tamil Nadu border and was on the Chennai-Tiruchy national highway," Askar said.

Managing to reach Perambalur ahead of those in his stolen car, he approached the Perambalur highway patrol police and explained the matter. He also established ownership over the car by producing relevant documents. Following this, the highway patrol led by SSI A Ramaraj immediately set up a vehicle checkpoint near Vallapuram in Perambalur district to trap the suspects.

Askar also was with them. When Askar identified his vehicle, the police intercepted it. While six got down from the car, three other passengers fled. The car was then searched to find ganja stashed in over five bundles in it, sources added. Even as three of the accused detained were taken to the Mangalamedu police station along with the stolen car, the Perambalur police managed to arrest two of the other three who absconded at Perambalur new bus stand.

Inquiries revealed that M Bala (28), D Madhan (29) and his brother D Ajith (27), G Manoj (26), and J Prabhu (a) Prathiban (27) from Cumbum in Theni district were smuggling 130 kg of ganja from Andhra Pradesh. The value of the contraband is estimated to be Rs 13 lakh. Perambalur SP C Shymala Devi told TNIE, "Someone bought the stolen car in Cumbum who then leased it to the smugglers for Rs 2 lakh. They, in turn, used the vehicle to smuggle ganja. A search is on for the lone person who fled the scene. The accused are only carriers. There are various cases against them. We are taking steps to catch the real culprits."

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