Friday, March 18, 2016

Police ‘brutality’ on Canadian bizman: NHRC notice to 13 cops, 2 lawyers

 Cops raid Arnool Jamal’s room in wee hours in August 2013
MUMBAI: Acting on a complaint of a Canadian businessman of harassment by Mumbai police, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has served notices on 16 people, including four senior police officers, five constables and two lawyers.
This may be the first time that as many as 13 police personnel from Mumbai police have been served NHRC notices. They have been given four weeks time to respond to the notice, as per information posted on NHRC web site.
The complainant, Alnoor Jamal, a Canadian senior citizen of Indian origin, in a strongly worded complaint raised issues of extreme high handedness and police brutality on part of the officials of Mumbai police, who on the instructions of Shobhit Rajan, a local real estate businessman, and his two local lawyers swooped down on him and his indisposed wife at 0130 hours on August 29, 2013 at his hotel room in South Mumbai.
In his petition to the NHRC, Jamal named senior officers ACP Shivajitrao T Kolekar (Bandra Division), Police Inspectors Vikas Daulat Sonavane, Bapurao Narayan Pawar and Chagan Raghunath Jadhav and PSI Cellists Baptist D’mello (of Khar Police Station) and Lawyers Vibhav Krishna and Maurya of lawfirm M/s Juris Concillis.
Jamal said the entire police action is recorded on CCTV of the hotel and he cited hotel staff as the witness to the episode as the latter was present with him throughout.  
He urged NHRC to take suitable legal action be taken against all responsible.
Jamal had earlier petitioned the PMO who had referred the matter to the Maharashtra Government for inquiry.
The genesis of the case goes back to Jamal’s complaint against Rajan of indulging in criminal activities, including fraud, misrepresentation, money laundering, and direct theft from this joint venture company.
Jamal told NHRC that on Shobhit Rajan’s instructions, officers of Khar and Marine Drive Police Stations “have displayed high level of corruption, complete lack of accountability and professional ethics, and defiance of law. The police apparatus has allowed itself to be miss-utilized by Mr. Shobhit Rajan who in cohorts with unscrupulous lawyers have displayed wanton and complete disregard for the rule of law.”
“They intimidated and threatened my wife aged 62 and me and coaxed us to settle our disputes with Rajan on his terms or face immediate arrest after barging into the privacy of my hotel room,” he said.
Alnoor Jamal and Shobhit Rajan have several disputes in respect of Parke Davis property now called Rajaskaran Tech Park (Logitech Park). Jamal claims that Shobhit has used his muscle power by using his lawyers and police machinery as tools to intimidate Jamal into settlement.
"The depravity of these policemen was brought out in the report of October 18, 2013 prepared by the Senior Police Officer, the then Deputy Commissioner of Police Zone XI, Mumbai, Mr. Cherring Dorje. In spite of this Report, the local Indian authorities have refused to take any action against any one of them" he said in his plaint to NHRC.
Parts of Dorji’s report accessed by us, finds these policemen guilty of serious misconduct and recommends severe punishment. "The audacity of the police and especially the lawyers Vibhav Krishna and Maurya forcefully entering the privacy of a hotel room in the dead of the night where my wife and I were resting is unheard off even in remote Africa. I'm surprised such lawyers are given licenses by the bar council of India. They have acted like criminals"
Earlier, Supreme Court had dismissed Shobhit Rajan's petition challenging the Bombay High Court Order that quashed all cases against Alnoor Jamal's uncle Nazir Mussa, a UK based businessman, who was wrongly implicated in a criminal case by Shobhit Rajan.
Jamal said Mussa was forced to suffer the ignominy of imprisonment of nearly a month before he was granted bail by Bombay High Court which later was found to be a frivolous case and accordingly quashed and set aside by the High Court and then by the Supreme Court. Mussa, he said, was picked up the police from the CCI Club of Mumbai, when he was playing cards, even though he had nothing to do with the dispute.