March 16, 2021 11:58:23 pm
GANGSTER Rajendra Nikalje alias Chhota Rajan was convicted and sentenced to 10 years in jail in the case of a murder bid on a city builder in 2013.
Rajan and six others, including his gang members Rohit Joseph alias Satish Kaliya and shooter Prakash Nikam, were also found guilty under sections of the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act and directed to pay a fine of Rs 5 lakh each.
The CBI, which took over the case from Mumbai Police, had booked 10 persons on charges of Arms Act, attempt to murder and MCOC Act. While one of the men died while the trial was ongoing, another absconded and the third person turned approver to testify against the others.
The prosecution, led by special public prosecutor Pradip Gharat, had submitted that Ajay Gosalia was shot at by three persons on August 28, 2013, when he was leaving Infiniti Mall in Malad. It was alleged that the firing was done at the behest of Rajan.
The gangster had submitted before the court that there was no evidence presented by the CBI to show his involvement apart from the approver, whose testimony could not be relied on as he was himself behind the conspiracy and had named others not connected with the case.
The court, however, took into account statements of 36 witnesses among others to convict the accused.
This is Rajan’s fourth conviction in a major case. He is already serving life imprisonment after being found guilty of murdering journalist J Dey in 2011.
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