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Friday, 28 June 2013

Four policemen suspended after attack on Abu Salem in Mumbai jail

Four policemen were suspended on Friday after an attack on gangster Abu Salem inside Taloja Central Jail in Mumbai. Salem, who was attacked second time in a prison in the last three years, was shot at by 32-year-old inmate Devendra Jagtap twice, but got away with a minor injury on his right hand.

Questions are being raised on whether the attack was possibly ordered by the notorious D-Company after an unconfirmed media report said that underworld don Chhota Shakeel has claimed responsibility for it.

Salem's lawyer will file an application in court citing threat to his life. "It is a serious security breach when weapons get inside the jail. The person who decided to attack must have planned it. Details will be known after the inquiry," said BK Gupta, former DG of Tihar Jail.

At 8:30 pm on Thursday, Jagtap fired two rounds at him from a country-made pistol. Jagtap is a history-sheeter facing trial in the murder case of 26/11 defence lawyer, Shahid Azmi.

A case of attempt to murder has been registered against Jagtap. The police will seek Salem's custody on Friday. Initial probe suggests the country-made pistol with which Jagtap attacked Salem could have been smuggled into jail a few days before the incident.

In July 2010, Salem was attacked inside Arthur Road Jail in Mumbai by underworld don Dawood Ibrahim's aide Mustafa Dosa. "Abu Salem was in his cell and he was shot from outside (his cell)," confirmed AK Sharma, Commissioner of Police, Navi Mumbai. An embarrassed prison administration is now probing how the pistol was smuggled into the jail and on whose behest the gangster was attacked.

A Dawood aide turned foe, Salem was extradited from Portugal with his girlfriend, Bollywood starlet, Monica Bedi. At the time, India had assured Portugal that Salem would not be given the death sentence.

However, repeated attempts on his life are a big embarrassment and will affect the ongoing legal tussle between the two countries over cancellation of the gangster's extradition.


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