In all, around 4,000 persons were detained, including more than a quarter of them history-sheeters.
On Sunday, there were at least 15 cases reported, including robberies at knifepoint, in which men and women lost their mobile phones, gold chains and cash and other valuables. This came close on the heels of scores of similar petty crimes in the recent days, which reflected poorly on the police force.
On Monday evening, hours after the latest series of cases were reported, the Greater Chennai Police launched a storming operation in which thousands including history-sheeters, known offenders and those with pending non-bailable warrants, police said.
City Police Commissioner AK Viswanathan formed special teams at the station level, led by inspectors and comprising sub inspectors and head constables to intensify patrolling and vehicle check. The teams also inspected 740 hotels and lodges in the city to flush out criminals taking shelter there.
In the night-long operation, 1,325 offenders and 1,125 history-sheeters were arrested. Also, 32 persons against whom non-bailable warrant had been issued and 15 absconding accused were also arrested. This apart, 300 men were detained on the basis of suspicion.
In Tiruvottiyur, police arrested two men — Parthiban and Mani — for waylaying pedestrians based on CCTV footage retrieved from the locality. In Vepery, too, police arrested two men and have launched a hunt for their leader, Sidharth. Police sources said Kundrathur police detained seven men and let them off after interrogation, while Mangadu police have arrested two persons for threatening to a cab driver at knifepoint to rob his car.
Similarly, during vehicle check, police seized as many as 69 vehicles without valid documents and about 42 bikes for indulging in drag racing. Cases have been booked in Abiramapuram, Mylapore, Adyar, Foreshore Estate, Marina and R K Nagar police stations. While 71 men were booked for riding two-wheelers without helmet and 159 persons were booked for driving vehicles under the influence of alcohol. The number of traffic violation cases booked were 51.
In total, 9,748 vehicles including 1,226 cars, 1,193 autos and 7,329 two-wheelers were screened on Monday night for suspicious movement. Additional Commissioners M C Sarangan (South) and HM Jayaram (North) oversaw the operation that went throughout the night.