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Noida cops probe cement racket link with building collapses

NOIDA/GREATER NOIDA: A day after 12 persons were arrested for producing counterfeit cement, police have found that cement of such poor quality was being supplied to different builders across western UP, Delhi and Uttarakhand.
The cops have also found that the racket was started by a Ghaziabad-based cement dealer, who still holds the reins of the trade. The trader, Shiv Dayal, was jailed multiple times and his godowns were sealed repeatedly. But he continued to run the racket every time he came out on bail.
Cops are now looking for two Meerut residents who have been found to be involved in supplying the counterfeit cement across western UP. The police are also on the lookout for one Bhura, who would sell the bags of branded companies in which the poor quality cement would be packed.
The racket came to the fore when police received information about a mixing plant in Haibatpur area of Bisrakh. When the spot was raided, 1,022 sacks of substandard cement were found packed in sacks of branded companies.
SP (rural) Ranvijay Singh said the main brain behind the racket was Ghaziabad-based Shiv Dayal, who has been in the trade for decades. “He had been jailed three-four times, and left the trade due to old age. He is a septuagenarian and Jayanti Prasad, who is one of the 12 arrested, worked for him as an accountant. He managed all his work and learnt the tricks of the trade from Dayal,” he said.
Circle officer Swetabh Pandey said after Dayal stopped working, Jayanti took a godown on rent in Vijay Nagar area in 2018 and started producing substandard cement from there.
“While that godown was sealed in 2018 and Jayanti arrested, his godown in Morta Shahpur continued to flourish,” he said.
Police said they were probing the role of substandard cement in at least three incidents of building collapse in Shahberi in GB Nagar, Masuri in Ghaziabad and Meerut. An audit of the buildings in Shahberi had pointed to the possibility of substandard cement being used.

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