14-day police custody for gangster Pujari in Bengaluru
Bengaluru: A local court sent fugitive gangster Ravi Pujari to 14-day police custody for investigation into several criminal cases against him after he was extradited from Senegal earlier in the day, police said on Monday.
“First Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate V. Jagadish remanded Pujari in 14-day police custody till March 7 for interrogation and investigation into the criminal cases filed against him over the years,” Karnataka Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) A.K. Pandey told IANS here.
A 4-member Karnataka police team led by Pandey brought the 52-year-old underworld don to Bengaluru from Dakar in Senegal via Paris in an Air France scheduled flight during the wee hours and kept him at an interrogation centre in the city’s south-east suburb.
“Pujari was produced before the first additional city metropolitan magistrate after a medical check-up at a state-run hospital showed him in good health for custodial interrogation till March 7,” said Pandey.
Besides Pandey, Bengaluru joint commissioner of police Sandeep Patil, a sub-inspector and a constable went to Senegal last week to extradite Pujari after the West African country’s Supreme Court rejected his plea against sending him back to India.
“Pujari has been lodged in a Senegal jail since January 2019 after the local police trapped him at a barber’s saloon in Dakar where he was hiding in the guise of a retail hotel chain owner in the name of Anthony Fernandes,” Pandey recalled.
The senior IPS officer also clarified that Pujari was not hiding in a South Africa village as reported but in Senegal jail pending extradition to India.
“As Pujari is fit, the investigation team will quiz him from Tuesday at a high-security place to ascertain his involvement in several cases pending against him,” added Pandey.
Of the over 200 cases against Pujari in the southern state, 39 are in Bengaluru, 36 at Mangaluru, 11 in Udupi on the state’s west coast and one each at Mysuru, Hubballi-Dharwad, Kolar and Shivamogga in Malnad.
The other cases are in Mumbai (49) and in Gujarat (75) pertaining to extortion, kidnapping, ransom demand and murder threats.
Pujari also extorted huge amounts from popular Bollywood stars and realtors. He was also involved in an attempt to murder case, aimed at killing a prominent lawyer of Mumbai.