Aftab Ansari had, from his Presidency jail cell, sent e-mail messages, apart from calling Amir Reza Khan in Dubai from his cellphone, urging the henchman to get in touch with some sharpshooters to spread terror and extort money from businessmen and industrialists in Delhi, Jaipur, Gujarat and Calcutta.
According to police and CID officers, Aftab, running short on funds since his arrest, instructed Amir to engage Hemant Pujari, Sikander, alias Selim Chiplukar, Valu Dokri and Ezaz Rakrawala for the task. A senior assistant commissioner of Delhi Police, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Aftab had asked Amir to prepare a list of businessmen in the four Indian cities and set mercenaries on their trail.
Calcutta Police officers were the first to access the e-mails after cracking Aftab’s log-in and password last week. They passed on the information to their counterparts in Delhi and Mumbai, besides alerting the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Subsidiary Intelligence Bureau (SIB) in the Capital.
A senior officer of the Mumbai Police crime branch, Daya Nayak, told Metro over phone that the four sharp-shooters have broken away from the Chhota Rajan, Abu Salem and Anees Ibrahim gangs. “Amir is trying to get in touch with them for abductions and acts of terror. We have launched a hunt for them.”
Aftab, believed to have masterminded the American Center attack in January 2002, had been using a cellphone smuggled into his cell to network with his gang. “Amir is now negotiating with the sharp-shooters on the Net, under instructions from Aftab. We are in a state of alert,’’ said special superintendent of police, CID, Manoj Malaviya.