Maoist group in Dhanbad sends ₹50 lakh extortion notice to 4 businessmen
Four businessmen here have received extortion calls of ₹50 lakh each allegedly in the name of People’s Liberation Front of India (PLFI), a faction of the outlawed CPI Maoists that is active mainly in South Chotanagpur and Mohan divisions of Jharkhand, police said Tuesday.
Those who have received extortion demands are well known traders from the upscale Bank More area of the coal city.
All four businessmen received extortion demand through WhatsApp message and telephone calls at 9.30 pm on Monday. They duly informed senior superintendent of police (SSP) Asim Vikram Minz and additional superintendent of police (ASP) Manoj Swargyari about the extortion messages and calls.
The businessmen also lodged an FIR in this connection in the Bank More police station against unidentified criminals.
“Police are investigating the matter. Criminals involved in the incident would be arrested soon”, Minz told media persons.
This is the first time PLFI has served extortion notice to businessmen in Dhanbad. According to the complaint, the extortionists demanded ₹50 lakh each from Vishal Kumar, Vikash Kumar, Tinku Agrawal and Govind Agrawal.
All four businessmen have been asked to deposit the money in the PLFI party fund.
The Federation of District Chamber of Commerce (FDCC) has taken the matter seriously and requested SSP to provide special security in Bank More area which is the district’s business hub.
“There is panic among businessmen as this is the first time the PLFI has demanded extortion from the city’s businessmen”, said Rajesh Gupta, patron of FDCC.
In the past few months similar cases have been reported in the state capital Ranchi.
On November 2, alleged PLFI members had demanded ₹50 lakh from two businessmen of Ranchi. On November 17, the PLFI had demanded ₹20 lakh from Dr Shambhu Prasad, IMA secretary Ranchi chapter through WhatsApp message and telephone call.
None of these men have paid the ultras while the police have increased their protection.