The Chhattisgarh police arrested three people in Jashpur district for allegedly possessing and selling beef, PTI reported on Wednesday.

Two men believed to be beef traders – Sarfaraz Hussain and Gulab Mahli – had bought around 80 kg of cow meat from Bandega village in the neighbouring Odisha’s Sundargarh district to sell it in Nandutoli Kurmura village in Jashpur, Station House Officer (Narayanpur), Anita Prabha Minj, told PTI. After some villagers got suspicious, they checked their vans to find beef packed in one kilogram packets each, the police officer said. They then informed the police.

During interrogation, the two men are believed to have admitted that they had brought the meat for trading. They also said that one man, Pascal Minj, had bought the beef from them. The police recovered meat from Pascal Minj’s residence during searches, and eventually arrested him, the police official said.

The seized meat was confirmed to be beef after an inspection at a local veterinary lab, PTI reported. The three accused were booked under relevant sections of the Chhattisgarh Agricultural Cattle Preservation Act, 2004.