Just a trailer, says letter found in car near Mukesh Ambani's residence
Mumbai Police have found a note threatening the Ambani family in the SUV with explosives found near Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) chairman Mukesh Ambani’s house, Antilia. Their investigations have also revealed that the number plate on the car is fake, and the number actually belongs to the pilot car in the security convoy of Ambanis.
Police officials said that the note was found in a bag bearing logo of “Mumbai Indians”, the Indian Premier League cricket team owned by the Ambanis.
Directly addressed to Nita and Mukesh Ambani, the note claimed the vehicle with the gelatin sticks was just a trailer and that there was more to come.
Taking serious note of the incident, Mumbai police crime branch has formed 12 teams to probe the matter. Ambani and his family are already under Z+ category protection. Reliance Industries is India’s most valuable company in terms of market value.
The company on Friday issued a statement thanking Mumbai police for the efforts being taken to probe the matter.
“We are thankful to Mumbai Police for their quick and immediate action. We are confident that Mumbai Police will complete their thorough investigation quickly,” said a company spokesperson.
Meanwhile, a team from the National Investigation Agency (NIA) too reached Mumbai and has started a parallel probe.
One of the police teams has found that the SUV used was stolen from Vikhroli area on February 17, and a fake number plate was affixed on it, said a police officer attached to the crime branch who asked not to be named.
A Thane resident owns the SUV. He has told police that the SUV was lying unused for almost a year due to the lockdown. Last week, he took it for a drive to check it because he wanted to sell it, but found the steering was jamming. he parked it in Vikhroli, and took a cab home, but when he returned the following day, the vehicle was no longer where he left it. He registered an FIR at the Vikhroli police station on February 18.
About 2.5kg of gelatin, in sticks, was found in the SUV, enough to trigger a low intensity explosion. However, there was no detonator or timing device. The police believe the explosive was purchased in Nagpur.
The fake registration number chosen for the SUV was that of the lead car in the security convoy deployed for Nita Ambani, said the officer cited in the first instance. A second officer who is directly involved in the investigation said that the operation seems well planned.
The police also found more number plates in the SUV and that there have been attempts to erase the chassis number of the SUV.
Thus far, the police have found that the Scorpio was accompanied by an Innova, and that the two vehicles together moved towards Antilia.
At about 2.18am, the Scorpio was abandoned near Antilia; its driver sat in the Innova and escaped from the spot, said a third police officer who asked not to be named.
The Innova exited Mumbai at 3.05am through Mulund toll naka, this officer added. The registration number of the Innova car was found to be fake and cops suspect that this vehicle too was stolen. The Mumbai Anti-Terrorism Squad has also started a parallel probe into the matter.
A Quick Response Team and police commandos have been posted outside Antilia after the incident.
“An offence has been registered in this regard at Gamdevi Police Station, under sections 286, 465, 473, 506(2),120(B) IPC and u/s 4 of Explosive Substances Act 1908,” said Mumbai police spokesperson, deputy commissioner of police, Chaitanya Siriprolu.