Police suspect a dispute over the development of a plot of land in Mumbra to be behind the attack on Maulana Akhtar Hussain Ansari, 71, who was shot dead on February 14 near Dockyard Road junction by two motorcycle-borne shooters.
Joint commissioner of police, crime, Himanshu Roy, said Ansari headed several mosque trusts (properties) in the city and adjoining townships. He doubled up as a developer too. One such trust in Mumbra has properties where a mosque and apartments were to be built.
The crime branch has learnt that Ansari had a difference of opinion with one of his partners over a development agreement with a particular builder. “We will be questioning the builder as well as Ansari’s partner to find out whether that had anything to do with the murder,”
Interestingly, while conducting the crime scene investigation the police found a key that they later discovered belonged to a particular cupboard in Ansari’s Madanpura residence where he lived with his two wives and children.
“No one in the family knows what was in the cupboard. Ansari always kept the key with himself,” a senior crime branch officer said. “We will now be opening the cupboard in the presence of his family to find clues,” Roy added. The crime branch has ruled out underworld involvement, although the police believe the shooters were professional.