THANE: Police today seized 8.86 kilograms of depleted uranium worth around Rs 24 crore and detained two persons in the adjoining Thane district.
The depleted uranium was brought from abroad and was to be sold in India, police said.
Anti-chain snatching squad of Thane Crime Branch laid a trap near a hotel on Ghodbundar Road on receiving specific information that two persons were coming there to sell the radioactive element.
Police detained two people moving with a blue hand bag which contained two blocks of the sensitive material wrapped in velvet cloth. The bag also had a laboratory report which indicated the said metal was uranium, they said.
The metal is banned for sale in the open market as it is used in the atomic energy plants.
"We have detained two persons with the metal. As its sale is banned in the open market, we can't ascertain its value. But, it may be worth around Rs 24 crore," police officials said.
Joint Commissioner of Police Ashutosh Dumbre said, "We are filing a case under the Atomic Energy Act, 1962 and sending the metal for laboratory testing. After receiving report, we will take further action accordingly. We will go to the root of the matter."
Police are trying to trace the other receivers who were in touch with the accused.
Depleted Uranium is a low power Uranium. This type of uranium is used in bomb shells and other penetrating weapons.
US army used to use such type of low power uranium in bomb shells and other weapons but discontinued its use after their soldiers were getting reactions of its radioactive power.