Kendrapara, Dec. 2: Police today claimed to have unearthed a tender-fixing racket here with the arrest of Bijoy Nayak, the principal accused in Malik Suleiman’s murder case.
Nayak has been taken into custody, while three of his accomplices were also arrested following a raid conducted in the Chouriberhampur area in this town.
Nayak confessed to have shot Suleiman. He also admitted to the existence of an inter-district tender-fixing racket.
The police said the gang used to allow a particular contractor to submit tenders while threatening others to refrain from doing so.
Suleiman was shot dead on July 30, 2009, by his key aides near Badapalagada junction on the Paradip-Daitary expressway. His partners-in-crime had fired at him from inside a vehicle.
“Nayak, accompanied by three others, had shot Suleiman more than three years ago. While three of the assailants were earlier arrested and imprisoned, Nayak had managed to give the police a slip over these years,” Sarthak Sadangi, superintendent of police, Kendrapara.
Nayak had fled to Calcutta after the murder. He returned to the state only a year-and-a-half later and resumed his anti-social activities.
He had formed a splinter group of criminals spread across Cuttack, Kendrapara, Jagatsinghpur, Jajpur and Khurda districts.
He used to fix government civil construction tenders and extort money from traders.
Apart from killing Suleiman, he was also involved in over a dozen crimes, including an attempt to murder, said sources in the police.
Suleiman had recruited his aides, including sharp shooters, on a monthly payroll. But, the amount paid to them on a monthly basis was allegedly highly disproportionate to their gang leader’s ill-gotten wealth, which apparently turned the aides hostile towards their master and they plotted to kill him.