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Rakesh Wadhawan – His Underworld And Politics Nexus Came To An End

Rakesh Kumar K. Wadhawan founded Housing Development & Infrastructure Ltd. Presently; he is Executive Chairman at this company and Chairman of HDIL Infra Projects Pvt Ltd. (a subsidiary of Housing Development & Infrastructure Ltd.). Wadhawan is also on the board of 16 other companies. He is a builder who always sat on the laps of politicians and ruled them by funding elections and in turn earning SRA projects. The dedicated bankruptcy court has directed the resolution professional (RP) of Housing Development & Infrastructure (HDIL) to provide all the notices and relevant documents to the promoters of the company in the jail and has also directed the superintendent of the jail to make an arrangement of video conferencing for them to attend the Committee of Creditors (CoC) meetings. The dedicated bankruptcy court has directed the resolution professional (RP) of Housing Development & Infrastructure (HDIL) to provide all the notices and relevant documents to the promoters of the company in the jail and has also directed the superintendent of the jail to make an arrangement of video conferencing for them to attend the Committee of Creditors (CoC) meetings. The Mumbai-bench of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), while ruling in the plea led by Rakesh and Sarang Wadhawan, promoters of HDIL, however, observed that in the case of sharing confidential documents, the lenders can take decisions based on their commercial understanding. Currently, Rakesh Wadhawan is in judicial custody in the Arthur Road central prison, along with his son Sarang Wadhawan, in alleged connection with the Rs 6,670-crore Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative Bank scam. They were arrested on October 3 last year by the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of Mumbai Police after they were named in the FIR registered by the Reserve Bank of India on September 30. Subir Kumar, an advocate representing Wadhawans, cornered the development but refused to divulge any details since the matter is sub judice.

Once upon a time Rakesh Wadhawan, owner of Dheeraj builders ruled Mumbai slums with the help of underworld kingpins and politicians. Kripashankar Singh of the National Congress party was very close to him. Kripashankar was a minister of state in the 2004 Maharashtra state cabinet. He was involved in the Congress gains in Mumbai against Shiv Sena in the 2009 Maharashtra assembly elections. He was the president of the Mumbai chapter of the party until June 2011, when he resigned after his son was linked to the 2G case, an enormous telecommunications corruption scandal of 2010. In the 2008–09 period, several accounts held by Kripashankar’s wife Maltidevi, and his son Narendra, showed deposits and transfers totaling Rs 65 crore. The enforcement directorate found no evidence linking him to the Madhu Koda financial scam. However, the anti-corruption investigations revealed disproportionately large assets. Despite these assets, Congress kept supporting Kripashankar; it has been suggested that he is close to some aides of Congress President Sonia Gandhi. In March 2011, it was revealed that in 2008–09, Shahid Balwa had channelled Rs 4.5 crores into an account held by Narendra and his wife. In the anti-corruption atmosphere of the time, Kripashankar had to resign. On 22 February 2012, the Bombay High Court directed the city police commissioner to prosecute Kripashankar Singh for “criminal misconduct” under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.

Underworld criminal Kashi Pasi and his brother Subhas Pasi played the good cops and bad cops on behalf of Wadhawan’s. One used to create pressure on slum residents to accept the deal and vacate the place others used to negotiate the financial aspect. Kasi was an aide of gangster Chhota Rajan, Kashinath Pashi alias Kashi Pashi, was wanted in a case of criminal intimidation. He was arrested for threatening the management of a cable distribution firm, where he had been formerly employed. Later on, Kasi was killed in Varanasi. And Pashi shifted to Uttar Pradesh and became a politician. As two-time MLA in UP Subhash Pasi created his space in Indian politics and somehow after his brother’s death, he left Mumbai and also Wadhwans. Gradually Kripashankar got irrelevant in politics, so his utility too. Pasi’s family arrived in Mumbai from UP in the early 1960s and both he and his brother grew up on the streets of Jogeshwari, a western Mumbai suburb. In 1989, Pasi joined the Congress as a local party worker, hoping to build his way up. He was much closer to Kripashankar as Kripa was in the state cabinet. Kasi was also closed to Congress leaders like late Sunil Dutt and later his daughter Priya Dutt as part of their campaign strategy. Pasi actively campaigned for them, consumed with the hope that one day; he too, would get to contest from Mumbai. “Despite working for Congress for over 25 years, from ward, block, district to city level, he never got a ticket in Mumbai.

Finally, he left Mumbai and settled in Uttar Pradesh, by the time the 2012 elections came up, Pasi had quit Congress to join the Samajwadi Party. In 2012, as well as in the 2017 Assembly elections, he got elected from the Saidpur assembly seat in Ghazipur district on a Samajwadi Party ticket. The 2007 elections, though a humbling start, became a turning point in his political career. Soon after, he and his wife, Reena Pasi, launched the Akshar Foundation, to return corpses of those who died in Mumbai—by plane and then by ambulance—back to their UP villages. Pasi has rarely been in the news but is nevertheless no stranger to controversy. In 2017, the Juhu police filed an FIR against him and his assistant for duping a police officer of Rs 22.90 lakh on the pretext of selling him an SRA room in Andheri.

Those days, the underworld was taken over slum-rehabilitation projects in Mumbai right under the Mumbai police’s nose. Notorious criminals were handling huge SRA projects worth hundreds of crores in the city. Prakash Surve, with four cases of extortion and grievous assault registered against him at Borivali police station, is currently carrying out three SRA projects in Borivali, Dahisar and Worli. His projects include Adarsh Nagar in Borivali, Shanti Nagar in Dahisar (East), and Gandhinagar in Worli. According to current market rates the projects are worth over Rs 400 crore. From a known underworld figure Surve became a real estate developer overnight and now runs two big construction companies Raj Constructions and Aman Raj Constructions. The builders, cop’s underworld, and politicians became land sharks with the help of each other. Kashi Pasi was handling the slum-rehabilitation project of the Koldongri slums in Andheri. The project involves rehabilitating 2,500 families in an area spread over one lakh square feet. Kashi’s brother Subash looked after the business while his brother Kashi was in jail. The Pasi brothers stand to earn over Rs 100 crore from the sale of FSI. The brothers were also involved with SRA projects in Daulat Nagar in Santacruz, Sambhaji Nagar in Andheri, and Kokan Nagar in Jogeshwari. These projects were each worth over Rs 200 crores. The Pasi brothers, originally from Ghazipur village in UP, used to live in a Chawl in Shankarwadi in Jogeshwari. However, the family stock rose as Kashi ventured into the underworld. Kashi has over two dozen cases of extortion, assault, and rioting registered against him at different police stations in Mumbai and Thane. He was booked under MCOCA for his ties with the Rajan gang six months ago. In the present time, Subhash somehow got an image makeover by joining politics, Kripashankar almost vanished from political corridors, Wadhavan is in jail.


 

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