“We were looking for suspects involved in the Dr Narendra Dabholkar murder case when we received a tip-off about Chaudhari. He was taken into custody from Bhakti-Shakti Chowk in Nigadi and has been handed over to the Crime Branch officials from Thane,” said Inspector Sachin Sawant of the Pune Crime Branch.
The Thane police was on the hunt for Chaudhari since the Lucky compound building collapsed on April 4, claiming 74 lives and injuring many more. After an offence was registered against him for allowing construction of the illegal residential building, he fled Thane and went to stay at his brother-in-law's house in Chakan near Pune along with his wife and children.
The Thane police then announced a cash prize for informants who would disclose his whereabouts. “Chaudhari managed to evade capture all this time by avoiding stepping out of his hideout,” a police official said. Inspector Sawant and constables Siddharth Lokhande, Vilas Gujar, Maruti Bhujbal, Chandrakant Sawant and Ganesh Mali were part of the team that nabbed Chaudhari.
The other plot owners were identified as Abdul Siddiqui, Jamil Shaikh, Mohammed Khan, Haddisulla Choudhary, Habisullah Choudhary, Abdul Choudhary, Nazirul Hasan Choudhary and Mohammed Iliyas Malik Mohammed Rafiq.