Officers from the Mumbai crime branch’s Anti-extortion Cell (AEC) solved a shootout case by arresting five members of Suresh Pujari gang. The accused had targeted a developer from Ulhasnagar in July.
Those arrested were identified as Hanumant Gaikwad alias Anna, 27, caterer in Solapur, Rahul Londhe, 24, crane maintenance agent in Solapur, Ravindra Ghare alias Ravi, 31, caterer from Pune, Rohan D’Costa, 30, owner of a hooka parlour in Kharghar, and Eklaq Shaikh, 30, a resident of Ghansoli. While Ghare, D’Costa and Shaikh were arrested from Sion-Trombay Road in Chembur, where they had met to plan another hit, the remaining two were nabbed later.
Following their arrest, the AEC officers recovered five sophisticated firearms, 31 live rounds, four magazines, six mobile phones and a stolen motorbike, used for conducting recce before carrying out an attack.
Officials said that D’Costa was in direct touch with the gangster and had received Rs 5 lakh for distributing it among the other shooters and purchasing firearms for executing the attack on builder Sumeet Chakravarty. The attack had taken place on July 7, for which the accused stole a motorbike from Pune.
“We have informed the Ulhasnagar police about the arrests, as the case was registered by them. The accused are currently being questioned by us,” said KMM Prasanna, additional police commissioner, crime branch.
Investigators said that the identity of Gaikwad and Londhe was already knwon, as their faces were captured by the CCTV cameras installed at the site Ulhasnagar where the shootout had taken place. All the accused, besides Gaikwad and Londhe, have been remanded in police custody till Tuesday. The two, however, will be produced in a local court on Saturday. The police said Ghare has executed at least two similar crimes for Pujari, including the Bhumiraj Developer shootout, in 2010.