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No rifles missing from SAPB, says Crime Branch

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No rifles missing from SAPB, says Crime Branch
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Thiruvananthapurm: Days after the CAG report found shortage of 25 INSAS rifles and 12,061 live cartridges at the Special Armed Police Battalion here, Kerala police on Monday said a physical verification has found that no rifles were missing.

"As the CAG is a very responsible auditing agency and their allegation has to be taken seriously, a crime has been registered as per their report," ADGP, Crime Branch, Tomin Thachankery, told reporters here.

He said it was SAPB's responsibility to come clean on the matter since the charge was against them.

The battalion was asked to produce all their rifles for inspection, he said.

The ADGP said a physical examination of the 647 guns brought from 13 locations found no guns had gone missing.

"At least 647 rifles from 13 places were brought to the camp on Sunday and a physical verification and preliminary inspection was held", he said.

The corresponding body numbers of each rifle was physically examined and verified with the records, after which it was concluded that no guns were missing      Thirteen guns are at Manipur I R battalion.

"We held a video conference and their body numbers were checked and matched with records. When the police personnel return from their training from Manipur in March, it will be examined once again", he said.

However, the probe on the missing cartridges was continuing, he said.

The CAG, in a damning report tabled in the state assembly on Feb 12, had found shortage of 5.56 mm INSAS rifles and 12,061 live cartridges from the battalion here.

It had also come down on state police chief DGP Loknath Behera for purchasing luxury vehicles and constructing villas diverting funds and violating norms.

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