Dawood Ibrahim did not want prison, we said no: Sharad Pawar

Mumbai(PTI): Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo and former Maharashtra chief minister Sharad Pawar on Saturday said that senior lawyer Ram Jethmalani’s proposition regarding the surrender of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim was not viable as a criminal like him could not be left without being arrested.

“Ram Jethmalani had given a proposition that’s true, but it was conditional. He had put such a condition wherein Dawood would not have been arrested if he had come to India. You cannot not arrest a person who has so many cases against him. Everybody needs to follow the law but Jethmalani ji did not accept the suggestion,” said Pawar.

Jethmalani earlier claimed Dawood had offered to surrender to the Indian authorities in the 90s, but Pawar did not carry the matter forward.

“Dawood said that he was ready to come back, but needed assurance from the government that they will not use third degree… and will keep him under house arrest. He said that he was ready to face the punishment if he was wrong,” Jethmalani said.

“When he said this, I sent this in writing to Sharad Pawar… I told my son to inform about this offer to the local authorities,” he added. The 1993 bombings were a series of bomb explosions that took place in Mumbai. The single-day attacks resulted in over 350 fatalities and 1200 injuries.

Earlier a prominent newspaper reported on Saturday that the Indian government rejected a proposal by Dawood Ibrahim and Chhota Shakeel to return to India in 1993 after the Mumbai serial blasts. Now, neither of them are inclined to return.

“When we wanted to come back after 1993, you people, your government didn’t allow. Bhai had himself spoken that time to Ram Jethmalani, that too in London… baat ho gayi thi… But your ministry… that Advani played the game,” Shakeel told the newspaper on Friday.