On 25th February 2021, a car filled with explosives was found outside Mukesh Ambani’s residence, Antilia, in Mumbai. After the matter was taken to the police, the following events took multiple strange twists and turns. Here’s a summary of the incidents that took place since February 25.
1) On February 25, a Scorpio SUV filled with gelatin-based explosives was found outside Mukesh Ambani’s house in South Mumbai. There was also a threat note addressed to the Ambani’s that said these explosives were only a trailer and there was more to come. A complaint was lodged with the Mumbai Police the following day.
2) Shortly after, a message from a Telegram account claiming to be Jaish-Ul-Hind was posted which claimed responsibility for the explosives-laden car. However, the Mumbai Police found that it was a hoax. Another message from the supposedly real Jaish-Ul-Hind said that they had not posted the first message and had nothing to do with the incident.
3) However, the initial message had been traced to one Indian Mujahideen member, Tehseen Akhtar. This has raised concerns about whether the Indian Mujahideen has been revived after many dormant years. The police said that this was not likely since most of the group’s top operatives were put behind bars in the incidents following the 2008 blasts.
4) Next, the SUV was traced to one Mansukh Hiren, an automobile spare parts business owner. The car had been given to Mumbai Police officer Sachin Waze in November last year. He had returned it citing problems in the steering. On February 17, the car was stolen from Hiren when he had left it unattended overnight. He filed a missing car report the following day.
5) On March 2, Mansukh Hiren posts a letter to CM Uddhav Thackeray, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh, and the Mumbai and Thane police chiefs, alleging harassment by the police. Hiren’s wife claims that Sachin Waze had instructed Hiren to send that letter and that Waze was trying to convince Hiren to get arrested and promised him bail.
6) Mansukh Hiren left home on March 4 to apparently meet some police officers that he was on good terms with. On March 5, he was found dead at Mumbra Reti Bunder on the banks of Kalwa creek, with handkerchiefs stuffed in his mouth. The police are yet to find the exact location of death to figure out if he was killed by murder or suicide. Hiren’s wife, Vimla, strongly believes that Sachin Waze had something to do with his death.
7) The Opposition continued to pressurize the Shiv Sena-led government to remove Waze from his post due to which Waze was taken off from the Crime Branch and was no longer the investigating officer in the Ambani bomb scare case. The case was then handed over to National Investigation Agency (NIA), while Sachin Waze was being interrogated by Maharashtra’s Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS).
8) After nearly 12 hours of interrogation, Sachin Waze was arrested in connection with the death of Mansukh Hiren and was booked by NIA under several sections of the Indian Penal Code for forgery, criminal conspiracy, and intimidation.
9) Waze was previously suspended for 16 years in 2004 for allegedly manhandling the Ghatkopar bombing convicts in custody. He was reinstated by the Shiv Sena last year, during the pandemic.
10) Waze has denied using the SUV found outside Ambani’s house. He also said that he was only a small part of the plan and named some Shiv Sena leaders who were allegedly the major conspirators. It was found that Waze and his team have obtained fake number plates which were used on the cars following the SUV the night before it was found in front of Ambani’s house. They also apparently seized CCTV footage from several places in Mumbai and Thane to avoid detection.