Vinod Chembur: Going from an estate agent to Chota Rajan's man Friday
Chembur studied till Std IX and got into the matka business, which grew in a few years, and soon, he ventured into the real estate world. In 1985-87, when he was searching for flats for sale or rent in Tilak Nagar, he got in touch with Rajan
His is a story of a middle-class man, who trying to support his family, going overboard to earn quick bucks - Vinod Govardhan Asrani alias Vinod Sindhi, after venturing into real estate and getting acquainted with Chhota Rajan - became Vinod Chembur, his man Friday.
Chembur studied till Std IX and got into the matka business, which grew in a few years, and soon, he ventured into the real estate world. In 1985-87, when he was searching for flats for sale or rent in Tilak Nagar, he got in touch with Rajan, who had already gained notoriety having joined Dawood Ibrahim. In 1998-99, Chembur was booked by the Social Service Branch for betting on cricket matches but was acquitted. In the same period, the Chembur police arrested him in an assault case, but he was acquitted in that too.
"He was a big bookie, who became a big builder. Most of his projects were in Navi Mumbai and Chembur, including the famous Safal Twins, the 20-storey towers where he lived," said an officer.
As per his police statement, "On June 7, 2011, I got call from Chhota Rajan. He asked me angrily 'Where is J Dey?'. I asked him 'Why are you so angry?'. He said Dey had written many things against him and even wanted to kill him with Dawood's help. He told me to meet him and tell him to stop writing against Rajan."
Chembur has confessed to meeting Dey and another reporter in a Mulund bar, where he helped shooter Satish Kalya to identify Dey. After the murder, Chembur went on a pilgrimage and was arrested on his return on July 2, 2011. Suffering from cirrhosis of the liver, he was granted bail for undergoing a transplant but succumbed before treatment.
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