With his air of confidence and persuasive ways, this chain snatcher managed to dupe senior cops — even the former commissioner of the Government Railway police (GRP).
Anand Murli Nair (43), an erstwhile member of the notorious Suresh Manchekar gang, was arrested by the Thane GRP on Monday, while he was attempting to snatch a chain off a female victim at a platform in the railway station. Investigations revealed that snatching chains was only one aspect of his illustrious criminal career — he also excelled at extracting money from cops on the pretext of giving them leads on other notorious criminals.
Captured at last
As soon as Nair lunged for the chain, the woman raised the alarm, and onlookers overpowered him. Nair initially denied having snatched the chain, but when members of the crowd searched him, they found the mangalsutra and subsequently handed him over to the Thane GRP.
During investigations, cops learnt that Nair had victimised many cops in his illustrious career in conning — he had even cheated former GRP commissioner Tukaram Chavan, who is now Inspector General of Ratnagiri range.
A way with words
Nair duped Chavan last year in May. “Nair approached Chavan and told him that he had information about a chain snatcher with 50 cases registered against him. He asked for Rs 10,000 in exchange for the information. After negotiations, he settled for Rs 3,000. Nair then told Chavan that the chain snatcher would be at Chinchpokli station. Chavan even deployed staff to nab the criminal, but the snatcher never appeared, and Nair fled with the money,” said the police officer from Thane GRP.
“Yes, I had met Nair, and he told me that he had improved. He told me that he could give me leads to a notorious snatcher, and I fell into his trap,” confirmed Chavan.
Nair has fooled several others, including senior police inspectors and sub inspectors.
“He promises cops that he will help them catch big criminals, takes money for his services and never returns. If caught by constables while snatching chains, he tells them confidently that he has been deployed by a senior police inspector of the GRP to nab a chain snatcher. No constables dare to call their seniors, and Nair is set free,” said a police officer from the GRP. After his ringleader Suresh Manchekar was shot dead in an encounter in 2003, Nair started working at a railway canteen in Matunga. He became acquainted with some chain-snatchers there, and started robbing people. Shivaji Dhumal, the then senior police inspector of Thane GRP, nabbed him in the act, and he already had around 100 cases registered against him. The number of cases have now climbed to 150.