A police informer who was charged Rs 300 for a bottle of mineral water at the Uma Palace Bar in Mulund was so enraged that he set the entire police machinery on a wild goose chase, by calling on their emergency numbers and passing on false information to them about the bar.
At least 200 policemen responded to his calls and reached the bar, only to realise that a vengeful informer had given them a false lead.
After the raid proved to be a failure, the cops have now initiated the process of registering a complaint against the errant informer.
On September 7 around 11 pm, various departments of the police force received information simultaneously that despite the state government’s ban on dance bars, around 14 girls were found dancing in the Uma Palace Bar.
The bar had been embroiled in controversy during investigations into the murder of MiD DAY’s Crime Editor J Dey, when it was discovered that Chhota Rajan’s close associate Vinod Asrani alias Vinod Chembur identified Dey to hired assailants outside Uma Palace Bar.
On receiving the information, senior PI of Mulund police station JJ Jadhav and on-duty officer Mukut Rao rushed to the spot with a team of police officials. They searched the entire bar but found nothing incriminating. The informer, who identified himself as Manoj Singh, approached them and claimed that he had seen the 14 ‘bargirls’ flee in an Innova.
The officials then passed on the information to the police control room and even enforced nakabandis at several spots. However, all their efforts were in vain. A little later, a deputy commissioner of police (DCP), two assistant commissioners of police (ACPs), three night-duty inspectors from Navghar, Bhandup and Kanjurmarg police stations also reached the spot with their respective teams. These officials also launched a search for the alleged bargirls but found none. An SRPF team also reached the bar, and the search continued all night.
“Seeing the SRPF team and the heavy police presence, the local residents thought that the bar was under attack from terrorists,” said an officer. A police officer then questioned Singh, asking him how it was possible for 14 girls to flee in a single Innova. He was shocked when Singh replied that he had passed on false information because he wanted to teach a lesson to the bar owner, as the latter had charged him Rs 300 for a bottle of water.
The cops then recorded the statements of waiters. They said that Singh had consumed four small pegs of alcohol, and was served a bill of Rs 400, which he paid. He asked for bottled water, and was furious when he was charged Rs 300.
“Main tum sabko abhi sabak sikhata hun. Tumko dikhata hun meri pahunch kahan tak hai (I will teach you all a lesson. I will show you my reach and influence),” he said.
“We have collected documents which prove that Singh was drunk. We have maintained a diary and also passed on written information to the superiors. We will take strict action against him,” said a police officer from Mulund police station.