What is a Patriotic Don? This title has been claimed by several members of the underworld and it was something that was started by Chhota Rajan following his split with the Dawood Ibrahim gang in 1993 in the aftermath of the Mumbai serial blasts.
While there could be many reasons for that split, Rajan saw the blast which had got a communal colour as an opportunity to position himself as the man who is fighting against dons who have the patronage of Pakistan.
Rajan who continued with his activities is said to have shared information with the intelligence bureau about the Dawood gang.
The officers of the Research and Analysis Wing however say that there was no such information coming by from Rajan and the agency never dealt with him. Sources say that Rajan passed on information mainly to the Intelligence Bureau and not the R&AW.
The making of a Patriotic Don:
Intelligence Bureau officials say that this is a tag that Rajan has given himself. There was no such thing as Hindu or Muslim don. However, it was the 1993 blasts which changed the equation in the underworld.
In the aftermath of the 1993 blasts, Dawood took shelter in Pakistan and it is a well known fact that he has become a strategic asset for the ISI since then.
Rajan was clearly overshadowed by Chhota Shakeel a key Dawood aide. There was an undercurrent between Shakeel and Rajan and the split would have taken place anyway.
However, the 1993 blasts was used as an excuse for the split and Rajan positioned himself as the don who was fighting against the dons nurtured by Pakistan.
However, in this ugly world of the underworld do such titles work? It does not says an IB official while also adding that this is done largely by these dons to position themselves.
The underworld is all about the money and clout- both of which do not have a religion. The D- Gang has a large number of Hindus working in it and this explains it all.
The new patriotic dons:
Following Rajan it was Ravi Poojary who positioned himself as the patriotic don. Poojary originally from Karantaka was part of the Rajan network, but he parted ways when he realized that the syndicate was on the downfall. However, Poojary too took a cue from Rajan and positioned himself as a Patriotic Don.
Today the name of Poojary crops up every now and then. The last time it had cropped up is when he is alleged to have threatened a Congress minister in Karnataka in connection with the murder of Prashanth Poojary, a Bajrang Dal activist who was opposing the sale of beef.
IB officials say that the positioning as a patriotic don or a Hindu don, helps these persons where local support is concerned.
They are attempting to make a statement every now and then and hence take up issues which are sensitive in nature.