Absconding drug trafficker carrying Rs 1 lakh reward held from UP

The Delhi Police’s Crime Branch on Monday said that it has arrested interstate drug trafficker Pankaj Upadhaya, who carried a reward of Rs 1 lakh on his head, from neighbouring Uttar Pradesh.

Deputy Commissioner of Police, Crime Branch, Monika Bhardwaj said: “Upadhaya was arrested from Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly district. He is presently declared a proclaimed offender in a case filed by the Delhi Police’s Special Cell.”

Upadhaya was arrested by the Special Cell in 2014, and remained in judicial custody till 2018, when he was granted one month interim bail due to his wife’s medical condition. However, he did not surrender after that and was absconding since then. Later a reward of Rs one lakh was declared for his arrest.

Bharadwaj said that a team was sent to his native village in Uttar Pradesh to ascertain his whereabouts. She said that on local enquiry and intelligence, the team managed to get his mobile number, and through technical surveillance, found he was residing there only.

On June 10, a trap was laid near his location and on June 12, he was found leaving his village in a car, she said.

“He was intercepted and asked to surrender, but on seeing the police, jumped out from his Bolero car and started running away. The team, after a brief chase, apprehended the accused and on seeing the same, the local villagers and relatives of the accused gathered at the spot and managed to help the accused run away from custody. The staff, without losing hope, again chased Upadhaya and this time managed to lock him in one of the houses,” the DCP said, adding that they managed to get him out of the village.

She said that he was wanted in to cases related to drugs, and earlier, used to supply a small quantity of drugs on the directions of Javed around Bareilly. Held in 2003 by UP Police with 10 kg of heroin that he was about to deliver in UP’s Gajraula, he cleverly ensured that he was arrested in the name of Pankaj Sharma and also managed to procure documents in the same name. He remained in judicial custody till 2009.