31 Dec : Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s family has received an extortion letter from suspected local criminals threatening to harm them if a demand of Rs 50 lakh is not met following which police have further tightened security.
Police said on Wednesday that the letter was sent to Dhoni’s family by a person claiming to be a member of the underworld don Dawood Ibrahim’s gang but maintained "it is actually a letter that has originated locally from a colony which is very much inside Ranchi and not very far from where Dhoni lives".
Suspecting that the letter could be a job of "local criminals," Inspector General and Jharkhand Police spokesman S N Pradhan said, "the perceived threat from the underworld gangs is for the moment ruled out".
He, however, said that "we are taking all precautionary measures and I am sure it will be sorted out quickly".Ranchi Senior Superintendent of Police Sampat Meena said on Wednesday, "We got information yesterday that they (Dhoni’s family) received a letter by post demanding extortion money".
She told a press conference in Ranchi that "after premilinary investigation we find that it is the handiwork of one Taslim, a local criminal facing extortion charges". Taslim has been asconding for a long time, she said.Reports published in Hindi newspapers in Ranchi have said that Dhoni’s father Paan Singh had received the letter on 29th December from one Taslim who claimed that he was a member of Dawood’s gang.
Police said security has been tightened with personnel from Special Task Force guarding Dhoni’s residence at Mecon Colony Ranchi.
Pradhan said, "it appears to be an act of mischief by local criminals. In that colony there are two rival groups that tend to trap and expose each other.So we believe this is some kind of mischief going on but we would not like to underplay it."
He said Dhoni enjoyed security cover on par with high "Z" category and that "it has been upgraded".Extra police forces have been deployed in and around his house, he said, adding that "when he moves there is plenty of security".