Mallesh Bora alias D K Rao
Nashik 19 Aug 2917 (PCP NEWS DEVENDRA JAIN) : District and sessions court in Nashik, Citing lack of evidence, acquitted all the remaining 12 accused, including Underworld Don Chhota Rajan’s most trusted lieutenant, Mallesh Bora alias D K Rao in the murder of O P Singh, who was one of Chhota Rajan’s henchmen.
Among those acquitted are three prison department officials from Arthur Road and Nashik jails and the jail Doctor. These 12 were the only surviving under-trials, two were killed in police encounters, one died of natural causes, and two disappeared on getting bail. On November 24, 2002, Gangster Omprakash Singh was brutally strangled to death in Nashik Jail by 13 of his fellow gang members. In one of the boldest and most well-planned jail murders that the state has ever witnessed, the case has come to an end with not a single conviction. O P Singh used to be one of the most trusted aides of Chhota Rajan, until the don learnt that Singh was trying to poach his men.
O P Singh was a post-graduate in science and used to be a quality control officer at the Mazgaon Docks, He joined Chhota Rajan’s gang in the early ’90s to avenge his brother’s murder at the hands of the Amar Naik gang. Singh quickly impressed Rajan by building a powerful nexus with police officers. He was one of the few gang members Raja trusted even after the attack on his life in 2000. a year later, Singh, who mostly operated from Nepal, was arrested by the Delhi police.
Infuriated, Rajan ordered his right-hand man, DK Rao, to kill Singh. At the time, Rao and the other 12 henchmen were in Arthur Road Jail in Mumbai. They bribed prison officials to ensure they would be transferred to Nashik Jail, where Singh was lodged. According to the charge-sheet, even as the killers traveled to Nashik Jail, Singh was happy that would meet his friends after so long. He told his wife he was skipping his court hearing in Mumbai so he could spend more time with them. The same day Nashik Prison officials organised a volleyball match to keep other inmates busy. Meanwhile, the 13 killers took a clothesline from the yard and strangled Singh in broad daylight.
As per the police investigation, Singh used to look after most of the Rajan’s land dealings and other financial matters. But, he began to pocket huge sums without the don’s knowledge and was even plotting to start his own gang. His mistake was trying to instigate key gang member Balu Dokre against Rajan. This cost him dearly, as Dokre tipped off Rajan about Singh’s disloyalty, after which Rajan ordered DK Rao to kill Singh in jail, there were around 40 witnesses, but the prosecution examined only 13 key witnesses. Few witnesses turned hostile, while few could not recall the incident,” said Advocate Randhir Kale, representing DK Rao. Even Singh’s wife, who was star witness in the case, never turned up in court.
In this case police had arrested 17 accused, including Arthur Road under-trial department chief Sharad Shelke, Nashik Jail officials Jaywant Shinde and Bharat Maskar, medical officer Dr Ramchandra Kale, Rajan gang members D K Rao, Niranjan Shahu alias Builder, Shripad Dinkar Paradkar, Firoz alias Rafiq Khan, Sharad Bavkar, Suresh Kutiyenet Baka alias Mangesh Parab, Sarfiya Nepali, Chandrakant Khot, Banpya Lingeri, Sunil Kakde, Suresh alias Chandra Pujari, and Pravin alias Mapya Thorat.
D K Rao is left with just two criminal offences to his name, after clearing as many as 42 cases, including the O P Singh murder. Both remaining cases are extortion charges. He is is currently out on bail. PCP/DJ 15 30