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Kerala Police arrest 2,069 criminals under ‘Operation Aag’

Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 5 (IANS) The Kerala Police in a major operation across the state have arrested 2,069 ‘anti-social’ elements under ‘Operation Aag’. The raids started on Saturday evening and are continuing till now.

The raid is being primarily held to arrest those who were placed under the Kerala Anti-Social Activities (Prevention) Act (KAAPA). Some are absconding while others are those who have not appeared even after arrest warrants were served.

Those who are arrested under non-bailable charges will be remanded in judicial custody while the others will be placed in preventive custody for more than 24 hours and will be let scot-free after questioning.

The state police had earlier conducted ‘Operation Kaaval’ for cracking down on anti-social elements which were later discontinued.

According to police, most arrests took place in Thiruvananthapuram with the state capital district accounting for 297 arrests. As many as 113 criminals were arrested from Thiruvananthapuram City and 184 from Thiruvananthapuram Rural. As many as 261 criminals were arrested from Kollam, 257 in Kannur and 256 from Kozhikode district.

The arrests are continuing and senior police officers from the state police headquarters told IANS that ‘Operation Aag’ would continue in the coming days.

The Kerala Police is facing criticism from several fronts, including the ruling CPI(M) over the increase in the number of crimes, including drug peddling and assault against women.

The police have drawn flak after Om Prakash and Puthenpalam Rajesh, two- known history-sheeters hailing from Thiruvananthapuram, were absconding after assaulting a person and brandishing swords. The duo have still not been apprehended.