Mumbai, Mar 31: Vadodara-based ‘ethical hacker’ Manish Bagale, who alleged a telephonic conversation between senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader from Maharashtra, Eknath Khadse and underworld don Dawood Ibrahim, was arrested on Friday. “Mumbai police arrested hacker Manish Bhangale for falsely alleging a telephonic conversation between Eknath Khadse and Dawood Ibrahim,” reported ANI.
Earlier, the Maharashtra Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) had given a clean chit to Eknath Khadse and sought an explanation from Manish Bagale. The investigative agency had found no call record between Khadse and the fugitive don Dawood Ibrahim. There was speculation that Bagale’s charges could be politically motivated in a bid to defame Khadse.
Mumbai Police also gave a clean chit to the BJP leader. “Our initial analysis of the cell phone number (belonging to Khadse) indicated that there were neither outgoing nor incoming calls from this number to that of the fugitive (Dawood) during the entire period of September, 2015 to April, 2016, as stated in the (AAP) press conference,” Mumbai Joint Commissioner of Police (crime) Atulchandra Kulkarni had said.
Manish Bagale alleged that Eknath Khadse had received several calls from Dawood Ibrahim’s wife Mehjabeen Shaikh’s number 021-35871639 between September 4, 2015 and April 5, 2016. Subsequently, political opponents, led by Aam Aadmi Party’s Preeti Sharma Menon staged an agitation against Khadse, accusing him of being hand in glove with the underworld.