CBI arrests Chhota Rajan for forged passport, gets custody

NEW DELHI: Hours after he landed in Delhi, Chhota Rajan was arrested by CBI on Friday evening in connection with the passport recovered from him in Bali, issued on the basis of forged documents. The don was holding a passport in the name of Mohan Kumar when he was detained at Bali airport on October 25.

Sources said CBI had registered a case under sections of cheating and forgery and also invoked sections of Passport Act against Rajan. The investigative agency had no other option as Mumbai police is yet to formally hand over the cases against him and Delhi Police does not have any case which may make for his arrest.

A special judge (duty metropolitan magistrate) who resides in Lutyens’ Delhi went to CBI headquarters to remand Rajan in CBI custody. Rajan was to be produced before a special CBI judge at the latter’s home but it was decided not to move the gangster, given the threat perception to him. Further appearances before a magistrate are likely through video conferencing.

The custody will pave way for Rajan’s interrogation which is likely to commence on Saturday. Contrary to reports on Friday evening, officials said Rajan had not named any Mumbai policeman on the “payroll of D Company”. A senior officer said, “A formal interrogation will start soon after documentations and formalities get over.”

CBI officials, however, revealed that it was a slip of tongue that faciliated Rajan’s dramatic detention at Bali airport. The don, sources said, apparently blurted out his real name to an officer while boarding a flight to Australia on October 25.

Though he was holding a passport in the name of ‘Mohan Kumar’, Rajan “accidentally” told the officer that his name was Rajendra Nikalje. He was subsequently detained and Interpol Indonesia roped in for interrogation. Once his fingerprints and other details were matched with Interpol data, the Bali Interpol officials informed their Indian counterparts.

A special CBI team, constituted to handle Rajan case, is coordinating with Mumbai and Delhi Police along with intelligence agencies to take forward the investigation of cases lodged against him. “There were around half a dozen agencies involved, namely Indonesian national police, DG Immigration, Interpol Indonesia, Ministry of Justice and Human Rights of Indonesia apart from India’s MEA, MHA, Delhi Police and Mumbai Police. A control room was set up at the CBI headquarters which was in touch with all these agencies and coordinating his deportation,” an officer said.

A statement from CBI on Friday confirmed his deportation from Indonesia saying he was in the custody of CBI-Interpol. “Legal formalities are in process,” it said.


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