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Extortion case: Gangster Kumar Pillai’s aide, who had turned approver, backs out

Setback to prosecution, which has to respond now to Pillai’s aide Praful Kapadia’s bail plea

mumbai Updated: Feb 14, 2018 12:30 IST
Charul Shah
Charul Shah
Hindustan Times
mumbai,mumbai crime,extortion
Gangster Kumar Pillai.(HT File Photo)

In a setback to the prosecution in the Kumar Pillai extortion case, Praful Kapadia, 65, a close aide of the gangster, who had agreed to turn approver against the don, backed out on Tuesday.

In November 2017, Kapadia had agreed to become approver and had pleaded for pardon on that basis.

However, on Tuesday afternoon, when Kapadia was produced before trial court through video conference and the court asked him about becoming an approver, he denied that he had made such a plea.

Later, his lawyer Prakash Salsinghekar moved a bail plea arguing that Kapadia had played no role in the incident and has been implicated falsely.

The prosecution had claimed that Kapadia was in touch with Pillai and had, on his instruction, deposited Rs1.25 lakh in Pillai’s wife’s bank account.

The court has now asked the prosecution to file a reply to Kapadia’s bail plea.

Kapadia, a resident of Byculla, was arrested on October 17, 2017, in connection with an extortion case registered at Vikhroli police station, on the basis of a complaint filed by a former Maharashtra Navnirman Sena MLA from Vikhroli, who is a builder by profession.

As per the prosecution’s case, on July 11, 2013, while Pillai was out of the country, he called the complainant and his brother demanding Rs75 lakh to allow him to continue a redevelopment project in Vikhroli.

A month later, on August 18, 2013, Kiran Dhanawade, a member of Pillai’s gang, visited the builder at his home, allegedly threatening to kill him if he failed to pay the money within 48 hours. The builder approached the Vikhroli police, who arrested Dhanawade, who purportedly revealed Kapadia’s involvement in the case.

First Published: Feb 14, 2018 12:30 IST