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Dawood's properties to go under hammer today

Tuesday, November 14, 2017
By Raju Vernekar

The forfeited properties of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim in Mumbai and Aurangabad, worth nearly Rs 5 crore (reserve price) will be sold by a competent authority under SAFEMFOPA and NDPS Act in an auction organised in Mumbai, today.

Official sources in Competent authority’s office in South Mumbai said that an unexpected number of bids have been received through e-auctioning website and the usual manual process.

As per the public notice (No 02/2017) issued by the Union Ministry of Finance, the properties will be sold simultaneously by way of tender, public auction and e-auction to be held at IMC Building, Churchgate between 10 AM and 12 noon. The time will be extended by three minutes after each bid on the portal of auction -

The properties are :a) building structure at No 24, double stoned building, located at Yakoob street, Shabnam Guest House (City survey No 4334), Bhendi Bazar, Mumbai 400009 (tenanted building)- reserve price- Rs 1,21,43,000/-(earnest money-Rs 48,57,200/-), b) Damanwala Building (Room No 18-20, 25,26,28), Plot No 17-21 and plot No 34-40, Pakmodia Street and Yakoob street (C S No. 4327) Mumbai 40003 (tenanted building)- reserve price-Rs 1,55,76,000/- (earnest money-Rs 62,30,400/-), c) Building structure at Plot No 4, Hotel Raunaq Afroz, (near J J flyover)Pakmodia Street, Bhendi Bazar-reserve price-Rs 1,18,63,000(earnest money-Rs 23,72,800/-), d) Plot No 602 ((built up area 63.52 mtrs),Pearl Harbour Cooperative Housing Society, 9, Tulshiwadi, Mazagon, Mumbai-400010 –reserve price-Rs 92,69,000/-(earnest money Rs 23,18,000/-), e) Factory plot No. A/49 (600 square mtrs), MIDC area, Paithan, Aurabgabad-reserve price-Rs 1,02,000/- (earnest money-Rs 26,000/- and f) tenancy rights of Room No 2, first floor, Dadriwala Chawl, Saifee Jubilee Street, Maulana Shaukat Ali Road, Mumbai -400003-reserve price-Rs 65,90,000 (40 per cent Rs 26,36,000) (Earnest money-Rs 6,59,000).

 The auction is being held under the Smugglers and Foreign Exchange Manipulators (Forfeiture of Property) Act, 1976 (SAFEMFOPA) and the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985(NDPS).

Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha(ABHM) chief Swami Chakrapani and a Supreme Court lawyer Bhupendra Bharadwaj are among the bidders. Bharadwaj has filed bids for two properties by taking loans against his house.

Chakrapani has announced that ABHM is ready to pay 10 percent of the amount that anyone else bids for the listed properties. He wishes to construct an ultra modern toilet complex at Hotel Afroz while at the Nagpada property he wants to set up a hospital.

In the 2015 auction, Chakrapani had won the bid at Rs 3.32 lakh to purchase Dawood’s Hyundai Accent, priced at Rs 15,700. However, the green sedan is in bad shape with burst tyres and shattered windshield, was set ablaze by some miscreants when it was parked in a housing colony at Ghatkopar.

In an earlier auction, the Hotel Raunaq Afroz and Shabnam Guest House, had gone under hammer. In the auction held on December 9, 2015,  activist and lawyer S. Balakrishnan, had emerged the top bidder at Rs 4.28 crore for Hotel Raunak Afroz, a 500 sq ft eatery. He had filed the bid in the name of “Desh Seva Samiti”. After winning the bid, he deposited Rs 30 lakh, but failed to pay balance of Rs 3.98 crore, resulting in forfeiture of his right to purchase the property. The second highest bidder, the RS Dawoodi Bohra Muslim Trust, refused to pitch in and purchase the property in place of Balakrishnan. As a result, the property emained unsold. Balakrishnan, was planning to use the property, to set up a computer centre for underprivileged women and children. Speaking to the Afternoon D & C, Balakrishnan said that even now he is interested in acquiring this property.

This time, competent authority has reduced the earnest money deposit for Hotel Raunaq, to Rs. 23.72 lakh (Rs 6.28 lakh less than the 2015 auction). The reserve price is Rs 1.18 crore (while the market price of the 45 sq mtr (485 sq ft) property is said to be around Rs. 6 crore to Rs 8 crore).

Previously, Dawood's properties were auctioned under the Foreign Exchange Manipulators (Forfeiture of Property) (SAFEMA) Act, 1976, when a private firm had auctioned seven of Dawood's properties including tenancy rights on a flat in Mahavir building in Matunga and a car.

The properties of Dawood were attached after 12 March 1983 serial bomb blasts in Mumbai, in which Dawood is an absconding accused. The TADA court had attached 8 eight properties in the nineties following his involvement in March 12,1993 Mumbai serial blasts and the IT department attached the remaining 15 properties subsequently. There had been three occasions in the past when bids were called to auction Dawood’s properties. Even now there are 50 benami properties of Dawood said to be in Mumbai.

In March 2001, the IT department had put 23 properties for an auction, after it failed to recover the tax dues for assessment years from 1991–1992 to 1995– 1996. A Delhi-based lawyer Ajay Srivatsava was the only lawyer to submit a bid for one of Dawood’s properties when they were put up for a public auction at Hotel Diplomat in Colaba hotel in south Mumbai on March 28,2001.

Srivatsava, had won the bid for a shed admeasuring 297 sq feet, located at Industrial gala no 32 at Tardeo in south Mumbai. He had purchased the shed for Rs 2.50 lakh.  But he had to wage prolonged litigation against Dawood’s  family members, before the Mumbai Small Causes Court, in the first week of March 2011 directed Dawood’s sister late Haseena Parkar to hand over the purchased property to Srivastava, within three months.  

But Late Haseena Parkar filed an appeal in the same court and obtained a stay. She  passed away on 6 July, 2014 and Srivastava is still fighting to get possession of the property from the inheritor. Haseena Parkar, who stayed at Damanwala building, used to hold kangaroo courts in  her residence to settle disputes between builders and gangsters.

Now that Dawood’s brother Iqbal, has already been arrested by an anti extortion cell of the Thane police on September 18,on extortion charges, more bidders are expected. Iqbal had shifted to Thane after the collapse of the “Huseini Building” In Nagapada, a few months back.

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