Chhota Rajan convicted for role in 2001 Mumbai hotelier's murder | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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Chhota Rajan convicted for role in 2001 Mumbai hotelier's murder

ByRutuja Gaidhani
May 30, 2024 01:33 PM IST

The court found that Rajan, along with four others, had conspired to kill Jaya Shetty, owner of four restaurants in the city, including one in Grant Road

MUMBAI — Chhota Rajan, the underworld gangster already serving a life sentence, was convicted on Thursday by a special Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court for his role in the 2001 murder of a Mumbai hotelier.

Chhota Rajan is an accused in approximately 70 cases in Maharashtra. PTI Photo
Chhota Rajan is an accused in approximately 70 cases in Maharashtra. PTI Photo

The court found that Rajan, along with four others, had conspired to kill Jaya Shetty, the owner of four restaurants in the city, including the Golden Crown in Grant Road. Three of Rajan's co-accused — Ajay Mohite, Pramod Dhonde, and Rahul Pansare — had been convicted earlier by the special court.

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On 4 May 2001, Shetty was at his hotel when two unidentified assailants entered and opened fire, killing him on the spot. Minutes after the murder, a close aide of Rajan's, Hemant Pujari, allegedly called the hotel and threatened to "wash out" the family if extortion money was not paid. Pujari remains a wanted suspect in the case.

Rajan, who is accused in approximately 70 cases in Maharashtra, including the high-profile 2011 murder of journalist J Dey, was arrested at Bali airport in Indonesia on 25 October 2015 and subsequently deported to India. In May 2018, a special MCOCA court sentenced Rajan and eight others to life imprisonment for their roles in Dey's murder, which took place in Powai in June 2011.

The Maharashtra government has since handed over all cases involving Rajan to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). Since his deportation, Rajan has been held in judicial custody at Delhi's high-security Tihar prison.

The conviction in the Shetty murder case serves as another reminder of the far-reaching consequences of organised crime in India's financial capital and the ongoing efforts by law enforcement to bring those responsible to justice.

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