Chennai: Over 300 history sheeters in Chennai have vanished into thin air after the city police for the first time started issuing externment orders (naadukadathal) to anti-social elements. ‘We have issued orders to 32 so far and the rest have fled the city locking their houses fearing that if they received the order in hand, they would not be able to come back for a year or two’, said a senior police officer.
City central crime branch deputy commissioner, S Jayakumar, a specialist in gangsters in Chennai and its suburbs, had been systematically chasing the history sheeters and booking them. According to a senior official with the externment orders in their hand, Jayakumar’s team members are now finding it difficult to locate history sheeters.
“We had a list of 350 rowdies who fell under the category of dangerous and active. As soon as we started serving the externment notice to over a score of them, the others started leaving the city on their own,” a senior official noted.
Though the city police had decided to use the section 51A of the police Act (power to direct to removal of persons from the city in special cases) in July last, the police are now using it as pre-election clean up.
The police believe that criminals from other districts are attracted to Chennai because it is the financial and industrial hub of the state.
To a question if the police in other districts would welcome chasing away criminals from Chennai to their jurisdiction, a senior police official noted that the criminals find it difficult to operate if it is not their home turf. “The anonymity in illegal operations will be prevalent only big cities like Chennai. In other districts, criminals will not be able to enjoy this kind of anonymity. More than that, it will take some time for them to set up their operation there” a senior police official noted....