Mumbai: Chhota Shakeel gang members, including his brother-in law Salim Qureishi alias Salim Fruit, hatched a conspiracy to extort a businessman at a birthday party of gang member Riyaz Bhati. The victim ended up footing the bill of the party of Rs 5.43 lakh.
A witness’s narration of the conspiracy forms a part of the charge sheet in the extortion case recently filed by the Mumbai police. The charge sheeth as been filed against seven members of accused Chhota Shakeel’s gang, including Fruit. Others named are Riyaz Bhati, 53, Amjad Redkar, 37, Sameer Khan, 49, Ajay Gosaliya, 63, Feroz Shaikh, 49, Javed Khan alias Papa Pathan, 45.
The gang had extorted a Range Rover car from the businessman and was demanding another Rs 32 lakh. The victim had got acquainted with Bhati a year before the incident and had developed a friendship as the latter told him he is influential and can help with his business.
The witness, engaged in hotel and construction work, was present at the party and said he had overheard the accused. He said in the statement that Gosaliya had told other gang members, pointing at the businessman who had organised the party, saying he is rich, wears branded clothing and owns imported cars.To this, Fruit said, as per the statement, “Ye apna target ho sakta hai, acha maal chootega.” (He can be our target. We can make good money). Redkar and Sameer Khan laughed at this.
How the businessman ended up footing the bill came to be revealed in a statement of a hospitality consultant. The businessman had introduced Bhati to this witness and requested to make a reservation at Sahara Star hotel for Bhati’s birthday party. Bhati had told him 80 persons were expected, but 170 ended up coming. The witness had made the booking in the name of his firm. The businessman had told him that Bhati would pay the bill. Later, Bhati kept avoiding paying the bill. At one point, when he asked Bhati to pay up, he had offered that he knew many influential persons and could get any work done for him. When the witness insisted that he pay the bill, Bhati told him, “Tu mere bare me thik se janta nahi hai. Google karle, main kya hoon pata chal jayega,” (You don’t know about me. Google and you will know what I am).
He then threatened him not to pester regarding paying the bill. The witness then approached the businessman regarding the issue and the latter told him that he, too, is being extorted by Bhati and then said he would pay the bill and paid him in installments.
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