PATNA: Criminals, or the so-called ‘dabangs’ (strongmen), joining politics is passe. Now, they are the lords of the real estate ring, playing a big role in the booming construction business, particularly in and around Patna.
The alleged crime lords of Patna, whether in jail or roaming in the city, are the ‘Big Daddies’ who fix the property rates. The old houses in Patna are rapidly being replaced by luxurious apartments. But, according to police sources, the deals are finalized by the alleged criminals.
“Of late, people accused in several criminal cases, including murder cases, are dealing in property in Patna. Police cannot intervene in property-related cases. So, it has become an easier profession for them,” said a top cop wishing anonymity.
Patna SSP Manu Maharaaj said, “In some recent murder cases, the deceased were somehow involved in property dealing and got murdered by their rivals. We found both the deceased and the accused were rivals in real estate business. It has become a new trend in Patna.”
The same goes with the recent cases of extortion calls. “Criminals like Ritlal Yadav, Bindu Singh and Pankaj Singh, who are in jail, are operating from there. They decide every details of the negotiation and the group members execute the deals,” said a cop.
“None of the accused criminals himself appears while clinching a deal. They target persons who genuinely own a land but are weak in paperwork. They take over the issue and compensate the owner with a reasonable amount. They do it on behalf of some builders in return of some big amount. It’s a kind of joint venture between the builders and criminals,” said sources.
Jitendra Yadav, who lodged a case of extortion of Rs1 crore against Ajay Verma, lodged in Beur jail, shared the same view. “I purchased a land in Bahadurpur area which Verma claimed was owned by him. So, he forced me to vacate the land or pay Rs 1 crore to him,” said Jitendra.
At least 50 property-related cases are lodged with the police every month. The land rates in Bahadurpur, Alamganj, Gai Ghat, Pahari, Saguna Mor, Danapur, Fatuha, Bihta and some parts of Bailey Road have increased considerably.