All the three cops have been suspended.Sources said that Ariyur police station SI Anbazhagan along with two constables, Ilayaraj and Yuvaraj, and two home guards carried out a prohibition raid at Kurumalai near Hosur in Anaicut panchayat union. On seeing the cops, hooch dis-tillers took to their heels.
The police team then destroyed some barrels of fermented wash and while checking if there were stocks of raw materials, such as sugar, jaggery and tree by the distillers, they also searched the nearby houses. As part of their raids, the police team broke open the locks and entered two houses from where they seized Rs 8 lakh in cash and 10 sovereigns of jewels.
Getting wind of the raid and seizure, residents be-sieged the team and demanded that the seized cash and jewels be returned to the owners. As tension continued to mount, the police team informed their superiors and as per their advice cops re-turned the cash and jewels.Not satisfied with it, residents followed the team to Ariyur police station and besieged the station around 10.30 pm.
They withdrew their agitation only after senior police officials rushed to the spot and promised action against the policeman. Police sources said that following the siege, cases were registered against the SI and 2 constables but not against the 2 home guard personnel, as they were taken only for assistance. Though action has been initiated by the po-lice, the issue continues to simmer as further action was awaited.
Meanwhile, Loganathan, IG (Prohibition), held meetings with top officials, including SP L Selvakumar, and others to track down the distillers. Three special par-ties have been formed and drones have been pressed into service to monitor the hilly terrain abutting Vellore town.