Cops raid booze party at bar owned by ATS officer's wife

The Pune Rural Police Crime Branch in the wee hours yesterday raided Maya Bar and Lounge in Wagholi that is owned by Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) official Rajnish Nirmal’s wife Anjali, and busted a booze party that was on even after the permitted time. They detained 300 partygoers, including IT professionals, lawyers, students and foreigners.

One hell of a party: Female partygoers step out of Maya Bar and Lounge after the rural police raided the event in the wee hours yesterday. The police arrested four persons and seized liquor worth Rs 10 lakh from the place 


Liquor worth Rs 10 lakh was seized from the lounge. Harmit Sahani and Ibrahim Abdul Jaheer Abbas, who had taken the property on rent from Anjali, and party organisers Saud Anwari and Shreyas Tanna were arrested. Officials said the organisers had promoted the event through a radio advertisement. They also said the raid was conducted after locals complained about loud music and indecent behaviour exhibited by the partygoers every night. 

Busted: Some of the female partygoers in the main lobby of the lounge after they were detained during the raid in the wee hours yesterday; the police secure the main entrance of Maya Bar and Lounge, owned by ATS officer Rajnish Nirmal’s wife Anjali, to prevent detainees from leaving the premises

“The organisers had procured permission from the excise department and the party was supposed to last from 7 pm to 11 pm. But the partygoers started flooding to the lounge only after 11 pm and it was clear that the permission was taken just for namesake,” Additional Superintendent of Police Vijaykumar Magar said. “The excise department should have informed us about the party as the organisers had paid Rs 8,000 to get the permission to conduct the party.” 

Magar said Rajnish Nirmal’s wife Anjali owned the property. “The property was leased out and the rent was fixed at Rs 2.5 lakh a month, and the establishment was only meant to be operated as an eatery. Now, why would anybody give Rs 2.5 lakh a month just for running an eatery? A person like Nirmal should have understood it,” Magar said. “We have registered a case against Anjali, wife of PI Nirmal, and will question her as well.”

Police Inspector Nitin Kumar Gokave of the Local Crime Branch said the raid was conducted after a tip-off. “A couple of Additional Superintendents of Police, two Deputy SPs, five police inspectors of CB and Lonikand Police station and about 100 police personnel raided the place at 1 am when the party was at its peak,” said Gokave. “After reaching at the lounge we discovered that loud music was being played and several people, including girls, were on the dance floor and liquor was being served abundantly. We also spotted some youths in compromising positions.”

Gokave said the moment partygoers and organisers realised that the cops had arrived they started screaming and tried to flee. “Our staff had restricted them to the main hall of the lounge,” said Gokave. “Some of the girls and boys who were totally lost due to over consumption of liquor and did not know what was happening. They started shouting and asked to play the music again.”

Some of the detainees alleged that the officials prohibited them from using the restrooms and told them to stay in the lobby until medical tests were performed on them. An IT professional, one of the detainees, accused the officials of beating the detainees.

Officials said they had spotted a BMW car outside the lounge with a ‘Member of Pune Municipal Corporation’ sticker on its windscreen. An official said that a son of a local politician was involved in the party. 

The other side
ATS official Rajnish Nirmal said though his wife Anjali owned the property, it had been leased out for five years. “I or my wife are not involved in the operation of the restaurant and as it has been leased out we can not interfere in the daily functioning of the lounge,” Nirmal said.

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