Mumbai: Former journalist and founder of Desh Seva Samiti S. Balakrishnan is bidding for underworld don Dawood Ibrahim's confiscated property in Mumbai's Bhendi Bazaar area to set up an education and learning centre named after freedom fighter Ashfaqullah Khan for poor children of the locality who he said are into drugs.
"There are lot of children from Bhendi Bazaar area who are into drugs. If I managed to win the bid, through our NGO Desh Seva Samiti, we will run English speaking and computer training institute at the place", he said while talking to local reporters.
"The centre will be named after great patriot Ashfaqullah Khan", he added.
Ashfaqulla Khan was a freedom fighter in the Indian independence movement who had sacrificed his life along with Ram Prasad Bismil. Ashfaqulla Khan was hanged in a conspiracy against the British Raj in the twentieth century. He was a prominent figure of the Hindustan Republican Association.
"Ashfaqullah Khan, not Dawood, should be the role model for kids", Balakrishnan said.
"The reserve price of the property I would be bidding for is Rs1.18 crore and earnest money deposit is Rs30 lakh", he said.
Seven listed properties of underworld gangster Dawood Ibrahim are with the Competent Authority. The authority seizes the properties of accused in cases under Narcotics and Smugglers and Foreign Exchange Manipulators (Forfeiture of Properties) Act 1976 after the 1993 Mumbai serial blast.
One of the seven listed properties Hotel Raunak Afroz, which now has a board 'Hotel Delhi Zaika' will be put under the hammer by a government auctioneer on Tuesday December 9. The property is situated at Pakmodia Street, Mohammad Ali Road in South Mumbai, which is considered to be Dawood's den.
This is not the first time the seized property of Dawood Ibrahim will be auctioned. Income Tax authorities have earlier put 11 properties on auction four times since the 1993 Mumbai blast but with little success.