Police confiscate 25 lakh masks, Mumbai civic corps to obtain 6 lakh

MUMBAI: With the government dealing with a serious shortage of masks to deal with the Covid-19 outbreak, the seizure of 25 lakh masks in Mumbai on Monday has been a great relief. Sources said that of the 25 lakh masks worth Rs 14 million confiscated by city police, the commissioner, in an order dated March 24, invoked the Essential Law and took possession of six lakh masks on Wednesday. These include N-95 one lakh masks and three layer three lakh masks.

The deputy commissioner (zone 7), Vishwas Shankarrao, possesses the masks that are likely to be distributed to health workers in various BMC-run hospitals. The masks are currently stored at the Andheri Sports Complex, a source said.

The remaining 19 lakh masks will be delivered to the Haffkine Institute in Pune according to the collector's order. The crime branch investigating the black marketing of the masks is looking for the key conspirators. The city's crime branch had raided two takedowns on Monday and seized the massive cache of masks. Police had arrested four suspects, including a customs agent.

The other suspects are being sought and investigations are ongoing. Mihir's father is being sought, who had allegedly accumulated masks with plans to commercialize them.