State to rent high-security cell for Rajan in Arthur Road jail for Rs 1

Underworld Don Chhota Rajan, who is likely to be lodged in Mumbai Central Prison, will be provided a high-security block in the jail. In a directive, the state government has asked the jail authorities to hand over the high-security block to Mumbai Police at an annual rent of Rs 1, according to a senior official from state Home department.

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Chhota Rajan being brought out from a holding cell at the Bali police headquarters in Denpasar, Indonesia on November 2. Pic/AFP
Chhota Rajan being brought out from a holding cell at the Bali police headquarters in Denpasar, Indonesia on November 2. Pic/AFP

The directive also instructed to ensure “foolproof” security of one of India’s most wanted gangsters. The state police have also requested the government to deploy paramilitary forces around the jail premises for Rajan’s security.

As per the order issued by the Home department, cell ‘12B’ has been denotified from the jail category and is now reserved for an “important task of Mumbai Police and will continue to be with the Mumbai Police till the work is over.”

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The cell, which was specially built to keep Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Qasab in isolation, at present houses alleged Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operative and 26/11 attack key handler Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal.

Additional Director-General of Police B K Upadhyay said he has written a letter to the state government, requesting deployment of paramilitary forces around the Arthur Road jail for security purposes.

“If Chhota Rajan is lodged there, we need a high security ring around him. To guard the jail’s periphery, I have requested the deployment of paramilitary forces around the jail. Inside the jail, there will be State Reserve Police Force, along with armed jail police officials,” he said.

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He further said that the video-conferencing facility inside the Central Prison premises would be activated to ward off any threat to Rajan's life while he is produced in court. “We do not know what medical problems he is suffering from.

Once he is handed over in the custody of Mumbai Police, he will be examined by in-house doctors of the prison and subsequently J J Hospital authorities will be asked to provide the facilities needed to him,” Upadhyay added.

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