Excise teams on Tuesday morning carried out a search operation in Bet area of Ludhiana district, where about 2.8 lakh kilograms of unclaimed ‘lahan’ and 100 litres of illicit liquor were seized and destroyed on the spot.

Following the directives of Excise and Taxation Minister Harpal Singh Cheema, Excise Commissioner Varun Roojam constituted four teams to launch the search operation at around 5.30 am, an official spokesperson said on Wednesday.

He said the four teams were constituted under Patiala Zone Excise Deputy Commissioner Shalin Walia by Ludhiana Range Excise Assistant Commissioner Shivani Gupta.

The search was conducted in areas/villages on the banks of the Sutlej, namely Talwani Nabad, Gorsia near Barundi, Bholewal Jadid, Rajapur, Khera Bet, Mazzara Kalan, Hakam Rai Bet, Sherewal, Baghian and Bahadur Ke village, said the spokesperson.

The search operation was carried out in the area spanning about 40 km, he added.

As many as 60 members of search teams led by Ludhiana excise officers, comprising  the excise inspectors and excise police staff carried out the search.

The water used for the purpose was found full of chemical wastes and toxins that came from the sewage of various industrial units of Ludhiana.

The raid made those involved run away, leaving behind 30 working stills, six quintals of wood, 15 iron drums, two aluminium vessels, plastic pipes and 12 bags of jaggery.

The Jalandhar district excise staff was deployed at the other end of the river, said the spokesperson, adding that these operations would act as deterrent to those involved in such activities in the Mand area and the areas along the river banks of Punjab.

The above news was originally posted on www.tribuneindia.com