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HindustanTimes Sat,26 Jul 2014

Neighbours say Zaveri was a helpful and peaceful man

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, May 18, 2011
First Published: 23:53 IST(18/5/2011) | Last Updated: 23:55 IST(18/5/2011)

Many residents of Patliputra Cooperative Housing Society at Oshiwara, where Iqbal Kaskar’s driver-cum-bodyguard Arif Zaveri lived with his family, were not aware of what work he did. They only knew that he was employed as a driver, but did not know by whom.

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Some of them thought he was with a private firm; he seldom discussed his job with them.

“We thought he was employed by a private firm. There were times when he would not come home for several days. But when he was here, he would leave at 8 am and return late at night,” said a resident of the society on condition of anonymity.

Some residents were aware that he was employed as a driver for Kaskar, the brother of fugitive don Dawood Ibrahim, but he never discussed his professional life with anyone.

Zaveri had been with Kaskar for a few years.

The locals said he was a very helpful person. “He would always be there to listen to our problems and assist us. He was a peaceful man and never fought with anyone. There have been times when other residents fought over petty issues, but he would sort out the matter,” said another resident.

Over 200 persons gathered to attend Zaveri’s last rites at his residence.

While the women mourned in his second-floor flat, the men gathered in the compound. The funeral procession was carried around the entire locality before it was taken to the Oshiwara Muslim cemetery.

Zaveri’s family was unavailable for comment.

It was over in seconds: Witness

Witnesses said Tuesday’s shooting of Arif Zaveri was over in seconds. Imtiaz, 38, who owns a provision store nearby, was on his way home when he heard the shots. “Initially I thought they were firecrackers, but then I noticed a crowd had gathered and there was pandemonium,” he said.

Imtiaz said he then spotted Zaveri soaked in blood. “A few people were chasing someone, but I couldn’t see who they were. That is when I understood what had happened,” said Imtiaz.


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