Kamala Mills blaze: Vishal Karia gets bail from Bhoiwada court; hotelier was arrested for shielding 1Above owners

Hotelier Vishal Karia got bail from the Bhoiwada court on Monday, ANI reported.

File image of the blaze at a pub in Mumbai's Kamala Mill Compound. PTI

File image of the blaze at a pub in Mumbai's Kamala Mill Compound. PTI

Karia (42), a hotelier, businessman and close friend of cricketers, actors and politicians, was arrested for allegedly sheltering the three wanted owners of the 1Above pub at his Juhu residence.

The Mumbai Police arrested Karia for helping Kripesh Sanghvi, Jigar Sanghvi and Abhijeet Mankar to evade the police in connection with the Kamala Mills fire on 28 December. His name was added in the FIR under Section 304 for culpable homicide, confirmed a senior police official from NM Joshi Marg police station.

According to a police official on condition of anonymity, the Sanghvi brothers left Mankar's Audi at Karia's residence on the night of the blaze. The vehicle has been subsequently recovered by the police. The police officials, investigating the Kamala Mill fire incident, further told Firstpost that Karia was suspected to have arranged mobile phones, SIM cards and vehicle for all three accused to flee the city.

Karia, a regular face in Mumbai's social circles, is also well-known to a particular senior IPS officer in the Mumbai Police. Among his friends, Karia counts a number of cricketers, especially Harbahajan Singh. According to the senior police official, whenever Harbhajan came to Mumbai, he stayed with Karia. In fact, the hotelier was present at a number of Harbhajan's family functions.

But it's not only Harbhajan on his list of cricketer friends: Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane and many others are familiar with Karia. During a number of IPL matches, he has also been spotted in the dressing rooms. After the arrest of Karia, a link between hukkaparlours, pubs and match-fixing in cricket is being probed. Karia is a partner in a number of entities including Silver Beach Entertainment, Satra Properties, Balaji Finactics, Satra Reality and Builders Limited, apart from owning many hukka parlours and pub chains in Mumbai. One such hukka bar in Mumbai is co-owned by Karia and Kripesh, police sources confirmed.

With inputs from PTI


Updated Date: Jan 15, 2018 22:58 PM

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