Vinod Asrani misleads the cops in J Dey case

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Jyotirmoy Dey
Mumbai, Jul 4: Vinod Govardhan Asrani, a Chembur builder who was a very close friend of the senior investigative reporter Jyotirmoy Dey, had called Dey and another television reporter to Uma bar for a meeting, which went on till 2 am on June 7. Asrani was suspected to have helped the shooters identify Dey and was picked up for questioning and subsequently arrested. "Kalia and his associates sat close to Dey's table to properly identify the target. They also noted down his motorcycle number and followed him till his residence in Powai,'' said a police officer.

Asrani have earlier reported the cops that he had informed Chhota Rajan about Dey leaking information to the rival Chhota Shakeel gang. He told Rajan that Dey wrote negative stories about him. But, the cops are not considering his statement completely as they believe that there is more essence in it than it seems externally.

"Asrani is misleading us. It is too early to comment on the motive as we have just arrested him and we need to interrogate him thoroughly,'' said Himanshu Roy, joint commissioner of police (crime).

The Mumbai police believes that Dey's killing was a contract killing. Kalia told interrogators that immediately after he received Rajan's message, he rushed to Mumbai from his native place in Thiruvananthapuram in the third week of April and stayed at his friend's house in Virar. Kalia also told the police he visited Kathgodam in the third week of May to get the imported .32-bore revolver on Rajan's instruction.

Asrani was earlier arrested in 2006 for money laundering with Chhota Rajan's wife Sujata Nikhalje.

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