Petrol adulteration racket unearthed

CHENNAI, JULY 12. A massive petroleum adulteration racket was unearthed by the city police today following the detection of an illegal oil godown at Vyasarpadi.

Three tanker lorries, two filled with diesel and the other with kerosene have been seized and one of the drivers arrested. A hunt is on for the two drivers, who fled the scene, and for the owner of the illegal godown. The godown situated on Ambedkar College Road was equipped with motor pumps, two wells for storing the oil and several drums.

The DCP (Flower Bazaar), Mr. Shakeel Akther who led the operation said the modus operandi by the racketeers was to offload a portion of the petrol and diesel at the godown and have some cheap chemical filled to make up the required level. A well was found with the cheap chemical, fitted with a pump for the purpose.

The DCP who had led a crackdown against petrol bunks which were involved in adulteration as SP Civil Supplies CID said that the present case was bound to have bigger ramifications and they were handing it over to the Civil Supplies CID wing for further investigation.

It is learnt that large scale adulteration was being done at most of the petroleum outlets in the city with the connivance of officials concerned. There have been instances in the past when from petrol bunk outlets were sealed for mixing a cheap chemical in their storage tanks.

A couple of years ago, police raided a petrol bunk on EVR Salai when they were mixing a cheap solvent into their storage tank and had the bunk sealed. An oil company official said that some petrol bunk owners had good political connections and managed to evade punishment.