Published On : Wed, May 11th, 2016

Mastermind of blackmailers’ gang nabbed

Mastermind Deepak Awale
: As the city cops continues its crack down on hardcore criminals, city police have booked many criminal and habitual offenders. Recently four members of a blackmailers’ gang, including two women were slapped under stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA). The mastermind of the gang Deepak Awale who had been dodging the police has finally been nabbed by the Mankapur Police Station.

It could be mentioned here that the 16th MCOCA action taken by city police within a span of 3-4 months had zeroed in on the gang of blackmailers. Three of the four accused were arrested earlier. The mastermind of the gang was dodging the police after a massive manhunt, he was arrested by Mankapur Police on May 10, 2016.

The three members of the gang who have been arrested and slapped with MCOCA are Dinesh Balchandra alias Panachand Nagdeve (45), resident of Indora Model Town, Plot No. 683, Jaripatka, Sunita Kishore Bulkar alias Sunita Deepak Awale (30), resident of Vinoba Bhave Nagar, Yashodhara Nagar, and Pushpa Umashankar Nikhare (45), resident of Tandapeth Slums, near Lal Darwaza, Panchpaoli. Incidentally, Sunita is wife of the kingpin of the gang Deepak Awale.

A series of offences have been registered against the gang members at different police stations including Jaripatka, Panchpaoli, Koradi, Wadi, Mankapur. In view of serious crimes committed by the gang members across swathe of areas in different police stations, the Additional Commissioner of Police, North Zone, ordered booking of the hardcore criminals under Section 3 of Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA).

The notorious goon Deepak Awale, the mastermind of the gang, had allegedly trapped more than 100 youths in his nefarious designs since the past 10 years. After trapping the gullible youths, the gang used to blackmail them and recover hefty extortion money.

Modus operandi:
In a recent case that come to fore, the victim identified as Sidharth Khobragade, a resident of Maitri Colony, Kapil Nagar had lodged a complaint with Mankapur Police Station alleging that five accused including two women have been blackmailing him and demanding an extortion amount of Rs 5 lakh. The victim alleged that the entire episode was a pre-planned game. The accused had approached him with a girl saying that they require Rs 20,000/- in order to secure admission in some college. After that the accused and the girl provided a favorable atmosphere for the victim to fall into the trap and establish physical relationship with the girl.

According to the pre-planned move, the girl started threatening the victim of lodging a complaint with the police alleging that the victim raped her. The gang of accused then started blackmailing the victim. The accused then started demanding a huge sum of Rupees five lakhs from the victim for not reporting the matter with the police.

In March 2016, the accused had taken the ATM Card and the Pin-number from the victim Sidharth Khobragade. After that the accused took the victim Sidharth to Shegaon and Buldana by a four-wheeler. The accused took out Rs 70,000/- from his account using his ATM card. After that they came to Nagpur and dropped the victim Sidharth at his home and demanded a cheque of Rs 5 lakhs. The accused took the victim with them to the Bank and withdrew the amount. In this manner, the accused had fleeced Rs 3,70,000/- (Rupees three lakhs seventy thousand) from him showing the fear of the law and police.

The accused were not satisfied with this fleeced amount of Rs 3,70,000/-, they started demanding and pressurizing the victim for remaining Rs 1, 30,000. When the victim expressed his inability in giving the remaining amount, they forcibly took him to Kanhan Police Station. After enquiry about the entire episode, the cop asked where was the first physical relations established, the girl said that it was Mankapur area. So the Senior cop of Kanhan Police Station asked the girl to lodge a complaint with Mankapur Police Station.

However, before the group went, the cop of Kanhan Police Station questioned the victim Sidharth about the alleged rape and refusal to marry the girl. However, when the victim Sidharth related the entire episode and how he got entrapped by the girl and how he was fleeced of Rs 3,70,000/- so far, the cop realized the entire case to be that of blackmailing. He informed the cop of Mankapur Police Station about how the girl is coming to Mankapur Police Station to register a case of rape and how she is part of the gang of blackmailer. When the cops of Mankapur asked about the name of the male member who had accompanied the girl, he immediately realized that he was the same man who was arrested by him in an earlier case of blackmailing. When the girl and the other accused reached the Mankapur Police, They made the victim Sidharth the complainant and the since the girl was lured by the gang-leader to trap young men, she was made the Government witness and booked all the other accused. However, the king-pin of the blackmailer’s gang Deepak Awale escaped enroute from Kanhan to Mankapur on the sly claiming to come with the lawyer.