Explained: Who is Ejaz Lakdawala, former member of Dawood’s gang, arrested for extortion

Lakdawala has lived in Canada, Cambodia, Malaysia, Nepal, UK and the USA.

On Wednesday, the Mumbai Police arrested fugitive gangster Ejaz Yusuf Lakdawala in Patna, Bihar who was wanted for several extortion cases. The Anti Extortion Cell (AEC) of the Mumbai Police Crime Branch held Lakdawala after his daughter shared his location with the police thereby ending a six-month-long dedicated search. Previously, Lakdawala has been a member of the Dawood Ibrahim and Chhota Rajan gangs.

Following his arrest, Lakdawala was brought to Mumbai and is directed to remain in police custody till January 21. He has been charged under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA). Since 1997, Lakdawala has lived in Canada, Cambodia, Malaysia, Nepal, UK and the USA.

Who is Ejaz Lakdawala?

Lakdawala fled the country nearly 23 years ago when he was lodged in Nashik jail for allegedly killing a 1993 blast-accused. Since then, he has been wanted for several extortion cases.

Lakdawala was a resident of Jogeshwari in Mumbai where during his early years he is known to have allegedly attacked his school teacher. Subsequently, sometime in the 1980s, he became involved with petty crimes and went to jail as a result. In jail, he came into contact with Chhota Rajan’s gang. In fact, Lakdawala is considered to be one of the first to side with Rajan after he split up with Ibrahim over the orchestration of the 1993 Mumbai blasts. The two of them moved to Malaysia, where they received information about the blast accused who were out on bail. Using this information, Rajan’s gang members killed them. Rajan was sentenced for life by a Special CBI court in 2018 and is currently serving his sentence in Tihar jail.

Subsequently, after falling out with Rajan, Lakdawala formed his own gang in 2008, after which he was accused of his involvement in several extortion cases. In one of the last cases filed against him before his arrest, Lakdawala is alleged to have demanded Rs 2 crore from a buffalo trader in Kalyan in December 2019.

In 2011, a special MCOCA court convicted three members of Lakdawala’s gang and acquitted two others in connection with an extortion case against a builder. The judgment mentions that on October 1, 2011, the real estate agent working for the particular construction company was shot in the leg by a man riding pillion on a red coloured motorbike.