Pakistan gang likely behind Mumbai businessman Pramod Goenka's kidnapping in Mozambique

Three months after Mumbai-based businessman Pramod Goenka was reported missing from Mozambique in Africa, media reports on Wednesday said he is suspected to be held captive by a Pakistani gang at the behest of a London-based businessman in neighbouring eSwatini (formerly known as Swaziland).

A report in The Times of India said that Goenka, who was reported missing hours after he landed in Maputo, was last seen leaving the airport with a man identified as Masjid. "Based on information provided by the Indian high commission, the Mozambique police and eSwatini police carried out raids at several places — including two farmhouses — and found the car," an Indian intelligence official, who is probing the case in Mozambique, said.

File image of the Mumbai Police. AFP

Representational image. AFP

The investigation revealed that the car belonged to a Pakistani gangster called Mazhar Shah, the report said.

Based on the CCTV footage , call detail reports, raids and statements of people connected with Goenka, investigators suspect the kidnapping might have been done at the behest of a businessman in London. Goenka, director of several realty firms, was reportedly in debt and had planned to pay off his creditors by selling a property in Pune.

On 21 February, the 52-year-old jeweller and the brother of Vinod Goenka — chairman of DB Realty — was reported missing during a business trip to Africa after the Juhu Police received an application from Pramod's son Yash. The application mentions Goenka was travelling to Maputo to meet a businessman named Kothari, who was also reported to be missing.

But since no ransom call was made after the alleged kidnapping, police were local authorities had no leads on Goenka's whereabouts for weeks after he went missing. Rudra Gaurav Shresth, India’s High Commissioner to Mozambique, told The Indian Express in April, "The local authorities in Mozambique are investigating the case and we are in touch with them.” Shresth, however, had refused to say if the missing complaint is being treated as a kidnapping case.

"The probe has revealed that a week before his disappearance, Pramod had travelled to Mozambique to meet an agent identified by the last name Kothari. He was in the middle of negotiating a land deal pertaining to a property mortgaged by him to a private bank. It was on his follow-up trip that Pramod went missing," the report quoted a police official as saying.


Updated Date: May 23, 2018 12:59 PM

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