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HomePoliticsIndiaDelhi Police seeks 5-day custody of 'oxygen hoarder' Navneet Kalra

Delhi Police seeks 5-day custody of ‘oxygen hoarder’ Navneet Kalra

Delhi Police said Kalra Dayal had imported the concentrators from China and was selling them at an exorbitant price of up to Rs 70,000/unit

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The Delhi Police on 17 May sought five-day custody of businessman Navneet Kalra from the court for interrogation in connection with alleged hoarding and black- of oxygen concentrators.

Metropolitan Magistrate Archana Beniwal will decide on the police’s plea seeking grant of custody. Delhi Police had arrested Kalra in the night of 16 May.

The businessman was on the run for over a week since the seizure of more than 500 oxygen concentrators from three upscale restaurants owned by him in the national capital.

Oxygen concentrators are a crucial medical equipment used in the treatment of Covid-19 and are on a high demand amid the second wave of the pandemic.

The district court had rejected Kalra’s anticipatory bail plea on 13 May, saying the allegations against the businessman were serious and his custodial interrogation was required to “unearth the entire conspiracy”.

The accused moved the Delhi High Court, which declined to grant him interim protection from arrest in the case, agreeing with the reasons given by the trial court while denying him the relief.

During a recent raid, 524 oxygen concentrators were seized from three restaurants owned by Kalra — Khan Chacha, Nega Ju and Town Hall. The case was subsequently transferred to the Delhi Police’s Branch.

Navneet Kalra Dayal is the owner of all three restaurants. He has been absconding since the raids and his mobile phone is switched off.

The police on 9 May conducted multiple raids in neighbouring states and his Chattarpur farmhouse to nab Navneet Kalra. It is suspected that Navneet Kalra has left Delhi along with his family.

Delhi Police said that Kalra Dayal imported the concentrators from China and that he was selling them at an exorbitant price of Rs 50,000 to Rs 70,000 per unit as against its cost of Rs 16,000 to Rs 22,000.

On 5 May, a case was registered against Navneet Kalra under sections 420 (cheating), 188 (disobedience to order promulgated by public servant), 120B (criminal conspiracy) and 34 (common intention) of the Indian Penal Code as under the provisions of the Essential Commodities Act and the Epidemic Diseases Act.

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