Pujari’s extradition process begins in Senegal

Ravi Pujari

The extradition process of underworld don Ravi Sulya Pujari is set in motion as the 60-day deadline to submit evidences to the Senegal government expired on Friday.

The police have already sent relevant papers to Senegal authorities to initiate the process. This enables the detention of Pujari to continue beyond 60 days till extradition.

“Pujari was detained by the Senegal police on January 19, while he was provisionally arrested awaiting extradition papers. As per the law in Senegal, the affidavit of extradition against Pujari should be submitted within 60 days after the arrest,” Amar Kumar Pandey, ADGP (Karnataka State Human Rights Commission) told DH.

It was Pandey who as ADGP (Intelligence) was instrumental in effecting Pujari’s arrest.

The Indian Embassy in Senegal has taken up the matter with the local government to speed up the process to extradite him to India.

Based on evidences, the local government will issue an order extraditing Pujari. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) upon receiving the communication will inform the same to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) which will share the information with the Karnataka government.

Pandey will lead a team to Senegal to bring Pujari as technically the officer who effects the arrest will be sent for the extradition.

“The extradition papers from India for all cases involving Pujari have strongly expressed the urgent need for the extradition,” Pandey said.

However, Pujari can challenge the evidences against the extradition.

“Evidences are robust against him and it is virtually impossible for Pujari to get the verdict in his favour. Game is over for Pujari,” the officer said.

These evidences pertain to over 160 cases in India including 97 cases in Karnataka, 48 in Maharashtra, 14 in Gujarat and one in Kerala.

Pandey closely monitored Pujari’s activities and his internet calls for six months. The police had their own internal and external sources to reach out to Pujari. 

He rarely stayed for long in one country. His sudden disappearance from Burkina Faso around September delayed the investigation as it took considerable time to reflect his location again in Senegal - a good over 2,000 kilometres distance between two locations.

Pujari had a definite pattern of hiding. He chose countries where French was spoken, but India did not have an extradition treaty.

There were several other patterns in his behaviour which helped the police trace his location. These patterns helped the investigation move in right direction.

The police translated all cases and evidences running into thousands of pages in Kannada to English and then to French.

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