In yet another big conquest for the Indian investigative officials, underworld don Ravi Pujari was reportedly arrested by the Senegal police on January 22. The Senegal officials were acting on a tip-off from the Indian investigative agencies, which received information from the Karnataka police.
Pujari was detained by the officials from Dakar while he was travelling from Burkina Faso and the embassy was informed of the arrest on January 26, reported the Hindustan Times. Officials in India, however, is yet to confirm the development.
Detailing Pujari's arrest, the local media reported that the don was travelling on a fake passport carrying the name Anthony Fernandez when he was arrested. He is now likely to be extradited to India and may be flown down on a special flight.
Who is Ravi Pujari?
- Pujari is one of the most infamous names in the underworld and is wanted in India for a number of cases of extortion, kidnapping and murder.
- He was born in Udupi, Karnataka, and later moved to Mumbai.
- A school drop-out, Pujari started off with petty crimes in Andheri, Mumbai. He was known to be a small-time criminal until he killed rival Bala Zalte.
- Pujari is known to have been mentored by Chhota Rajan, who later took him into his gang.
- He moved to Dubai in the late 1990s and extorted from real estate builders in the city.
- He and Rajan, however, parted ways after Dawood Ibrahim tried to kill Rajan in Bangkok in 2000.
- Pujari has a Interpol red corner notice issued against him, and has been on the run for about 10 years.
- The gangster has made several extortion calls to Bollywood personalities such as Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar, Karan Johar, Rakesh Roshan, Mahesh Bhatt, Farah Khan and Shahrukh Khan. He is also known to have threatened Shah Rukh for his equation with friend and business partner Karim Morani.
- In 2014, his wife, Padma, was arrested in Mumbai after she was extradited to India.
- In 2015, he is also said to have threatened senior lawyer Harish Salve.
- In 2016, Pujari had also threatened to eliminate hardliner Hurriyat faction Syed Ali Shah Geelani over protests in JNU.
- While Pujari is said to be residing in Australia, he often travels to Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Morocco.
Pujari's arrest comes days after it was reported that underworld don Dawood Ibrahim's nephew Sohail Kaskar would be deported to India from the United States soon.
Many believe that Kaskar's deportation could be a major setback for Dawood and his D-Company. However, underworld sources told the Times of India that the deportation may be a little disturbing, but wouldn't affect the D-Company in a significant way.