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Kamala Mills fire: 1Above owners’ arrest raises several questions on police probe

The arrests at crowded spots in the city, after a frantic search across the state, raises questions on cops’ efforts

mumbai Updated: Jan 12, 2018 09:23 IST
Megha Sood
Megha Sood
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Kamala Mills fire,1Above
The arrests at crowded spots in the city, after a frantic search across the state, raises questions on cops’ efforts(FILE)

The arrests of three owners of 1Above in connection with the December 29 Kamala Mills fire incident have led to slew of questions.

The Sanghvi brothers were arrested past Wednesday midnight, when they were supposedly loitering around the KFC outlet in Bandra (West).

The sudden surfacing of Sanghvi brothers, who were untraceable for the past 12 days, despite police teams hunting for them in south Mumbai, Pune, Lonavala and neighbouring areas of Palghar and Panvel, has raised questions over the police efforts to find them.

The arrest of Abhijit Mankar, the third partner in 1Above restaurant, is equally baffling. Mankar, like Sanghvi brothers, was absconding, only to be found outside Hotel Marine Plaza in south Mumbai at 7.30am on Thursday, seven hours after the arrest of Sanghvis.

Police officers, including additional commissioner of police (central Region) S Jaykumar, maintain the three were arrested based on the interrogation of Vishal Karia, who they arrested two days ago.

Karia allegedly gave their mobile numbers, which helped them track the accused, who were nonchalantly moving around in the open in Mumbai. Interestingly, even after their arrests, the mobile phones of none of the three accused were seized. “We arrested the three based on Karia’s interrogation. We are yet to seize their mobile phones or interrogate them,” said Jaykumar.

One of the investigators, on condition of anonymity, said it was not Karia’s interrogation which got them to the accused.

The Mumbai police had to take the help of crime intelligence unit who posed as peanut vendors and other disguises outside various spots, including the house of the accused and their lawyers, to finally get their whereabouts. Surprisingly, the plea of Sanghvi brothers and Mankar in the court claim they surrendered to the police.

The police said after they were arrested, the Sanghvi brothers said just one thing – for all these days, they were in their village is Rajasthan, “We have not got time to verify their claims. We are now bothered with the case and getting the documents concerned of the restaurant. It is an open-and-shut case,” said Jaykumar.

Meanwhile Virendra Mishra, deputy commissioner of police (Zone 3) confirmed the highway police have seized Yug Tuli’s jeep from Hyderabad highway for speeding on January 3.

First Published: Jan 11, 2018 21:26 IST