Shetty gives ‘vivid account’ of Rajan’s Bangkok escape

Gangster Santosh Shetty, who was deported to the city from Thailand last Friday, has given his interrogators "a vivid account'' of how fugitive gangster Chhota Rajan escaped from a hospital after being injured in an attack orchestrated by Dawood Ibrahim in Bangkok in September 2000.

According to Mumbai Police Crime Branch officers, Shetty has revealed how his girlfriend at the time had trained him and gangster Bharat Nepali in mountaineering skills to pull off the dramatic escape.

"In the past, Vicky Malhotra had told us how Rajan had escaped from a hospital in Bangkok after an attempt was made on his life by the Dawood gang. However, Santosh Shetty has now given us a very vivid and interesting account of how he helped Rajan escape from the hospital," said Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Himanshu Roy.

According to Shetty, when the attack took place, he was already in Bangkok along with Nepali. They called Bunty Pandey and Farid Tanasha there after the attack. These four were responsible for Rajan's escape. Rajan was kept in a room on the third floor of a hospital that was guarded by the Bangkok Police at the instance of the Mumbai Police, and the four Rajan aides needed to come up with a plan to free their boss.

"Shetty had a girlfriend of Chinese origin named Pun, who was an accomplished mountaineer. Pun provided them mountaineering gear and trained Shetty and Nepali for two days on how to bring down Rajan from a third-floor window," said Roy.

According to Shetty, on the day of the escape, Shetty and Nepali stayed with Rajan in his room at night. Around 2:30 am, they threw down a rope to Pandey and Tanasha, who then tied a haversack with the climbing gear in it, which was then pulled up to the room.

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