Ravi Pujari is making all the news since last week. The self proclaimed Hindu don is from Udupi in Karnataka. He was arrested in Dakar Senegal, where he was living with his family under the name Anthony Fernandes. He held a Burkinabe passport. Previously, he was believed to be residing in Australia.
Ravi Pujari has two brothers and one sister. He has two daughters and one son. He is a school dropout. He came to Mumbai at his teen age and started working in restaurant.He was a small-time criminal till he killed rival Bala Zalte and he made identity in Underworld. He started his criminal career at Andheri, Mumbai. Ravi Pujari joined Chota Rajan’s gang and soon became his right hand. He went to Dubai in 1990 and from that he started the business of taking money from the builders and owner of the hotel, threatening them. When Chhota Rajan split with Dawood Ibrahim after the March 1993 serial blasts in Mumbai, Guru Satam and Ravi Poojari were with him. The trio set up base in south east Asia and continued their operations. While Rajan relocated to Kuala Lumpur, where he was protected by a powerful local mafia, Satam parked himself in Hong Kong and Pujari travelled extensively in south east Asia supervising the gang’s operations. Satam and Pujari were trusted aides of Rajan, till an abortive attack was made on Rajan’s life in Bangkok by a team sent by Karachi-based Chhota Shakeel, Dawood’s right-hand-man, in September 2000. Unable to convince Rajan about their loyalty, Satam and Poojari set up their own gangs and operated from different world capitals. Extortion has been their speciality.
Rajan fell out with Dawood after the 1993 serial blasts in Mumbai. Rajan’s other gang members, such Santosh Shetty, Bharat Nepali and Ravi Pujari, also sought to become patriotic by taking Dawood. By killing Shahid Azmi, a lawyer representing terror accused, and plotting to eliminate Ehtesham Siddiqui, accused in the 2011 blasts, Pujari have been trying reinvent themselves as national heroes.
A lawyer, appearing for arrested Indian Mujahideen co-founder Yasin Bhatkal, has complained to the police that underworld don Ravi Pujari is threatening him and he should stop fighting his case. Days after the BJP MLA Ashish Shelar demanded a ban on the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind due to its legal support to accused in terrorism cases, under world don Ravi Pujari has threatened to kill Gulzar Azmi, a senior functionary in Jamiat. The organization has lodged a police complaint in this connection.
From 2009 to 2013, Pujari threatened many Bollywood actors like Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar, Karan Johar, Rakesh Roshan, and Shahrukh Khan. Ravi Pujari threatened Shah Rukh Khan for his relationship with Karim Morani who is a friend and business partner of Shah Rukh Khan.
However with his arrest, we can expect many more explosive stories from him about underworld.