Following the arrest of 34-year-old Bandra resident Pravin Vadhela with 10.20 kilograms of Mephedrone (MD) worth Rs 2.04 crore from Chembur on Monday, the Anti Narcotics Cell (ANC) officials on Wednesday traced the place where MD was being manufactured in Karnataka.
The ANC on Wednesday arrested another person believed to be a pharmacist in the said case. The arrested person, identified as Ramdas Pandurang Naik, is a native of Karnataka.
According to the police, during the interrogation, Pravin Vadhela revealed that he had set up a makeshift MD manufacturing plant in Hangal village in Havare district of Karnataka. An ANC team then visited Hangal village along with Vadhela.
Police sources said that the land where the unit was set up belonged to a local farmer to whom Vadhela would pay Rs 8,000 per month under the pretext of wanting to set up a soap factory on the land. “Vadhela told the police that the plant had been set up for the past three months at the spot. When the team reached there, they found a makeshift structure of three rooms in an open field,” said KMM Prasanna, Additional Commissioner of Police, Crime.
Vadhela had also hired Naik, a pharmacist, who originally hails from Hubli. The police seized 14 boxes, each containing six bottles of ‘bromine’ (a component used to make MD) and 125 litres of other chemicals, from the spot.
Prasanna said, “We are investigating as to how he got in touch with Naik, where he got the byproducts from, and others involved. We are also investigating into whether Naik is a licenced pharmacist or not.”