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Delhi Police arrest extortionist working for gangster Neeraj Bawana after shootout

Police said Saddam Hussain worked as an extortionist for alleged gangsters Naveen Bali and Neeraj Bawana who are in jail now.

delhi Updated: Aug 03, 2018 14:09 IST
Shiv Sunny
Shiv Sunny
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Delhi,Delhi Police,Saddam Hussain
The pistol and the bullets that were recovered during an encounter from a 24-year-old alleged criminal, when he was shot in his leg early Thursday near south Delhi’s Millennium Bus Depot in New Delhi, August 2, 2018. (Sushil Kumar/HT PHOTO)

A 24-year-old alleged gangster was arrested after he was shot in the leg in an exchange of fire with police on the Ring Road near Millennium Park Bus Depot on Thursday. The shoot-out came a week after Saddam Hussain allegedly fired at a man for ignoring his extortion demands, police said.

Police said a sub-inspector wearing a bulletproof vest was hit in his chest during the exchange of fire. Five rounds were exchanged. Police claimed Hussain allegedly fired the first round when an eight-member police team cornered him.

Joint police commissioner (southern range) Devesh Srivastava said Hussain worked as an extortionist for alleged gangsters Naveen Bali and Neeraj Bawana, who are in jail now.

The police were on Hussain’s trail since July 25 when he allegedly shot a suspected bookie in south Delhi’s Kotla Mubarakpur for refusing to pay extortion money. The south district police had arrested three suspects, including a juvenile, in the case. But Hussain eluded them.

“In the early hours of Thursday, the south-east district police received a tip-off that Hussain would be visiting an associate in Ashram. A police team waited near Millennium Park Bus Depot,” said deputy police commissioner (south-east) Chinmoy Biswal.

Police said at 5.20 am, the team spotted Hussain riding a motorcycle from Pragati Maidan towards Ashram. He ignored police’s signal to stop and tried to escape by riding his motorcycle on the footpath to take a U-turn.

But as Hussain tried to turn towards the footpath, he failed to notice an opening meant for the flow of water. “His motorcycle skid after getting trapped in that opening. As Hussain fell, he pulled out a pistol and fired at the police team,” said Biswal.

Police claimed that they did not immediately return fire. “Sub-inspector RS Dagar first tried to physically overpower him, but Hussain shot him in the chest,” said Biswal.

Dagar said he was shaken but his immediate reaction was to fire back at Hussain. “I aimed at his legs and fired three rounds. One bullet hit him below the right knee and he fell. Before he could attempt an escape or fire more rounds, we were able to capture him,” said Dagar.

Wanted man nabbed
On Thursday, a 24-year-old man suspected to be a member of jailed gangster Neeraj Bawana’s gang was arrested after a brief shoot-out on the Ring Road near Millennium Park Bus Depot in south Delhi.
A police team sets up barricades near Millennium bus depot to nab Saddam Hussain, who has multiple cases against him. They spot Hussain at 5.15am and signal him to stop.
Hussain sees the cops and tries to ride his motorcycle on to the footpath to take a U-turn and escape. But the motorcycle skids and falls.
Hussain then starts firing at the police team. A sub-inspector, RS Dagar, is hit in his right chest but his vest saves him. The police immediately fire back.
Dagar aims at Hussain’s legs and fires three rounds. He is hit once below his right knee. He collapses on the ground and is immediately overpowered.
Illustration: MOHIT SUNEJA

Hussain was taken to AIIMS trauma centre where he was operated upon, said police. He was out of danger. He is an accused in seven cases, the shooting in Kotla Mubarakpur being the last.

Hussain had allegedly shot at a cab operator on July 25 at Bali’s behest. Two masked youngsters had arrived on a motorcycle and shot the man in the leg after raining bullets at his office.

“The man was initially shocked and afraid. When we assured him, he revealed that on the afternoon of July 25, Bali had called him from Mandoli Jail. Bali told him that he had to pay extortion money if he wanted to run his satta (betting) racket. The shot was a warning for not taking the extortion demand seriously,” said Srivastava.

Whether or not the man actually ran a satta racket would be probed, but he had earlier been arrested under the gambling act, said Srivastava.

First Published: Aug 03, 2018 13:53 IST