Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who also holds the Home portfolio, on Monday directed the state's 14 District Collectors to ensure the arrest of 2,010 goons listed by the intelligence wing in 30 days time.
The directive came after the widespread criticism of the deteriorating law and order situation in the state from the opposition ranks.
The Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have demanded Vijayan should hand over the Home portfolio to another minister as he has failed to handle the police department with diligence.
Things turned for the worse last week following the "kidnap" attempt of a leading Malayalam actress in Kochi by a gang, forcing Vijayan to come out with the directive.
The district-wise list of goons is topped by Alappuzha, with 336 goons, followed by Kannur (305) and Thiruvananthapuram (266).
Vijayan has directed the authorities to make arrests under the Kerala Anti-Social Activities (Prevention) Act, if needed.