Abu Salem stabbed by Dawood aide in jail, now stable (Lead)

July 24th, 2010 - 5:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, July 24 (IANS) In a security lapse that has unnerved officials, mafia don Abu Salem was attacked Saturday with a sharp instrument inside the Arthur Road Central Jail, allegedly by Mohammed Dossa, a member of absconding mafia don Dawood Ibrahim’s gang.
Following a scuffle that broke out between them inside the jail premises, Dossa attacked Salem with a sharpened spoon during breakfast time this morning, injuring Salem in the face and neck.

Bleeding profusely from the neck and shoulder, the 43-year-old Abu Salem was rushed for treatment by a jail doctor and he is reported to be stable.

A top home ministry official described the incident as “minor” but said that the jail authorities would initiate “appropriate security measures” to prevent recurrence in the future.

The attack took place in a common area where all prisoners are allowed to come out in the high security jail precincts.

The home ministry official added that the jail authorities are likely to take a decision to shift Dossa - believed to nurse an old rivalry with Abu Salem - from the Arthur Road Central Jail to another location.

A case has been lodged against Dossa at the N.M. Joshi Marg Police Station here.

Thes attack has the authorities worried since the Pakistani terrorist Mohammed Ajmal Amir alias Kasab, awarded death penalty by a special court three months ago, is also lodged in the same jail.

His government-appointed lawyer K.P. Pawar told mediapersons that Kasab is “absolutely safe and secure” and he does not interact in any manner with other jail inmates, even during meal times.

Pawar said that Kasab has never complained of any wayward behaviour by any other jail inmate and reiterated that the terrorist awaiting the gallows faced no threats of any kind.

Besides his alleged role in the March 12, 1993 Mumbai serial bomb blasts case, Abu Salem is also named as an accused in the killing of music baron, Gulshan Kumar in Mumbai in 1997.

Salem, whose name once spelt dread for Bollywood, is also considered instrumental in unsuccessful attempts on the lives of film-makers Rajeev Rai and Rakesh Roshan a few years ago.

He, along with his girlfriend and Bollywood starlet Monica Bedi, was extradited to India in November 2005 after an assurance by the former National Democratic Alliance government that the duo would not be awarded the death penalty.

Situated in a congested residential area of south-central Mumbai, the Arthur Road Jail was constructed in 1926 and is the largest and among the oldest prisons in the state, having around 3,000 inmates at a time.

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