In just eight days, the Thane police have already taken Iqbal Kaskar to three different lock-ups in their jurisdiction, including at Thane Nagar and Waghle Estate. His police custody expires today, but the cops said they will seek an extension.
Kaskar has been arrested for alleged extortion of builders. Asked about his behaviour and cooperation with the investigation team, the officers refused to comment. Some of them mentioned that the don's brother has been asking for cigarettes, but no special treatment is given to him.
While senior officers from Thane police were tight-lipped on the matter, experts opined that usually criminals are not shifted unless there is a security issue or some other emergency. However, Y P Singh, former IPS officer turned lawyer, said, "There is nothing wrong in changing the custodial venue of any accused. It is the prerogative of the investigation officer to decide on the lock-up for the arrested criminal."
In 1987, dreaded gangster Babu Reshim was killed by rival gang members who pulled off an audacious raid at the Jacob Circle lock-up in central Mumbai. The invading gang hurled bombs, tried to gun down Reshim and then finally broke the lock on his cell and attacked him with swords and handguns.
When Dawood's rival Chhota Rajan was arrested and brought to India, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) preferred to keep him in Delhi, cutting security concerns if he was to be brought to Mumbai. Despite repeated attempts to contact Thane Commissioner of Police Param Bir Singh, he remained unavailable for comment.
Kaskar's past record
Iqbal Kaskar was deported from UAE in 2003. He was wanted in the Sara-Sahara illegal construction case, for building the twin shopping complex on land owned by the Central Public Works Department in Crawford Market, south Mumbai. Kaskar was acquitted in 2007 for lack of evidence.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)