A man, allegedly a serial inter-State burgler, was arrested on Wednesday by the Aluva East police after being on the run for the past 22 years.
The arrested man was identified as Kanakaraj, 40, of Thoothukudi in Tamil Nadu. He was allegedly behind successive burglaries in shops in Aluva town recently and was planning another when he was nabbed.
He was last arrested in 1999 by the Thrissur police in connection with a theft. Though he had allegedly carried out several burglaries in Kerala and Tamil Nadu since then, he evaded the police for over two decades.
He was arrested from near the railway station by a special investigation squad. The man had allegedly carried out thefts at a textile unit and an electrical shop.
“His modus operandi was to identify the place to be hit during the daytime. He would then lie down before the shuttered shop in the night and then break in by cutting the lock. He never uses a torch but uses a match stick to carry out the theft,” said the police.
That he doesn’t use a mobile phone makes it even tougher to track him down. District Police Chief (Ernakulam Rural) K. Karthik had formed a special investigation squad to nab Kanakaraj.
He has allegedly confessed to have carried out thefts in Kayamkulam, Thrissur East, Alapuzha South, North, Ernakulam Central, Palarivattom, Thirunelveli, Coimbatore, and Kulashekharam police station limits.
He never stayed put at any one place and kept on moving after every theft. He was nabbed by the Aluva police by surrounding the railway station on Tuesday night. Though he tried to flee after attacking the police personnel, he was eventually overpowered.
The clothes he allegedly stole from the textile shop have been recovered. He used to spend the proceeds from thefts for buying drugs and leading a luxurious life, the police said.
“We have deployed more people for patrolling in Aluva and surrounding areas. The antecedents of the arrested will be probed further,” said Mr. Karthik.
A team led by Aluva East Inspector C.L. Sudheer, sub inspectors R. Vinod and Rajesh Kumar, assistant sub inspector Soji, civil police officers Mahin Shah, Abubacker, Ameer, Sajeev, and Harris made the arrest.