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Wednesday, Aug 21, 2019

Arrest of two Thane corporators who colluded with Dawood Ibrahim’s brother Kaskar is likely

The police are beginning to see the contours of a much bigger politician-builder-underworld nexus

mumbai Updated: Sep 23, 2017 00:59 IST
Debasish Panigrahi
Debasish Panigrahi
Hindustan Times
Kaskar was arrested on Tuesday.
Kaskar was arrested on Tuesday.

The Thane police commissioner Parambir Singh on Friday said interrogation of two corporators from the city has become crucial to the investigation into the extortion cases involving global terrorist Dawood Ibrahim’s younger brother Iqbal Kaskar, even as the police are beginning to see the contours of a much bigger politician-builder-underworld nexus.

Singh’s remarks mean the arrest of the two politicians, both from different parties, is imminent as “interrogation” implies custodial questioning.

Sources said the names of several heavy-weight politicians from Thane district have figured in complaints by businessmen who have started contacting the Thane police after Iqbal’s arrest saying they have been coerced into entering deals. However, commissioner Singh remained tightlipped. “Our investigation has just started. We are in no hurry to jump the gun,” he said.

A senior Thane crime branch official, who is privy to the investigations, claimed Iqbal who was evasive during questioning on the first day following his arrest on Tuesday, started singing after the crime branch sleuths got tough with him. “He turned chicken before our tough interrogators,” the official said adding that the revelations made by Iqbal was sufficient to summon the corporator duo for a confrontation with Iqbal and his two arrested cronies to join the missing links in the case.

The officer said one of the corporators was instrumental in collecting Rs. 30 lakh ransom from a builder in Manpada, Thane, whose four flats in a recently constructed apartment was taken over by Iqbal as protection charges. The corporator collected the amount in 6 installments of Rs 5 lakh each and delivered the cash at Iqbal’s home in Dambalwalla building at Pakmodia street in Nagpada, the official said.

Deputy commissioner of Police, crime, Abhishek Trimukhe, too said the police were trying to find out the trail of that money by questioning Iqbal further.

Iqbal reportedly told his interrogators that when the corporator delivered the final installment of Rs 5 lakh, he bought him dinner. “Iqbal treated the corporator with biryani and bheja fry ordered from a famous restaurant in Pydhonie area,” the official said adding that the corporator has long been involved in land grabbing land and illegal constructions in and around Thane.

The other corporator, official said, played a crucial role in forcibly brokering the deal between one of Iqbal’s front-men and a jeweller who was looking for buyers for a piece of land in Thane. In return, Iqbal’s men paid the corporator a part of the protection money allegedly coughed up in gold from the jeweller’s showroom.

First Published: Sep 23, 2017 00:59 IST

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