MUMBAI: Making a shocking revelation, Nationalist Congress Party Minister Nawab Malik on Wednesday claimed that the Prime Minister’s security may have been breached as a history-sheeter with mafia links managed access to a VVIP event with the help of BJP’s Leader of Opposition Devendra Fadnavis.
Addressing the media, Malik said that a Mumbai builder from Versova, Riyaz Bhatti, 57, considered a henchman of absconder mafia don Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar, has always been seen in close proximity to Fadnavis, at BJP events, and even at his (Fadnavis’) dinner table.
“This same Bhatti was arrested in a fake passport case (in 2015 and again in 2020), but he was permitted entry to the VIP enclosure in a function attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. How did such a man who is close to Dawood and other underworld people, gain access to the VIP event and even manage to get his photos clicked with the PM,” Malik demanded.
Bhatti was nabbed on two occasions — October 2015 and February 2020 — in fake passport cases, his name cropped in land-grab cases with the help of Mafiosi Chhota Shakeel and has a Lookout Circular issued against him, but is currently absconding.
Elaborating on Fadnavis’ alleged underworld connections, Malik accused the former CM of flouting the PM’s objectives to rid the country of fake currency notes via demonetisation.
“In Oct. 2017, a cache of fake notes with a face value of Rs 14.65 crore was seized by Bandra Kurla Police, people were nabbed from Mumbai, Navi Mumbai and also others from Pune like Imran Alam Shaikh and Riyaz Sheikh,” Malik said.
Later, the DRI was probing the fake notes case, but suddenly it was hushed up by showing a face value of only Rs 8.80 lakh and at that time, the officer concerned was — coincidentally — Sameer Dawood Wankhede, claimed Malik.
“A few months later, Fadnavis rewarded Haji Arafat Shaikh, the elder brother of one of the accused in the fake notes case Imran Alam Shaikh by making him the Chairman of Maharashtra State Minorities Commission,” Malik pointed out, demanding the DRI revisit that currency seizure case to unravel the truth.
Hitting at the former CM, the NCP National Spokesperson said that Fadnavis reportedly put brakes on a probe involving a BJP leader named Hyder Azam — who is allegedly involved in bringing Bangladeshis to Mumbai and whose second wife is from Bangladesh.
“The Malad Police and later the West Bengal Police were probing the antecedents of his second wife, a Bangladeshi but everything was suppressed after a call from the CMO. Later, the same Hyder Azam was made Chairman of the Maulana Azad Minorities Financial Development Corporation Ltd.,” Malik asserted.
In the same manner, a close aide of Fadnavis in Nagpur, one Munna Yadav who is a dreaded criminal engaged in terrorising people, was made Chairman of the state construction workers panel.
Dismissing Malik’s contentions in Nagpur, Munna Yadav said his police record was clean barring some political cases and threatened to file a Re 1 defamation case against the NCP leader for making false allegations.
Malik asked Fadnavis to respond whether or not builders or landowners were forced to sell their lands and collect extortion money after they were threatened with calls from mafia abroad. — IANS