Goon trouble haunts those constructing houses in Old City

Terror-stricken residents dread approaching police

Hyderabad: Residents of several parts of the Old City, mostly belonging to the middle class, and keen on constructing their dream houses, after having obtained all necessary clearances from GHMC, are facing a major problem from the local goons.

Such has been the traumatic ordeal that they are against risking their lives to lodge complaints with the police. Instead, they feel ‘safer’ in paying huge amounts (mamool) to the goons to get their houses constructed.

This nuisance is prevalent in all localities from Chaderghat to Chandrayangutta. The anti-social elements, whose numbers are rising at an alarming rate, are earning a fast buck with their extortion tactics.

Two months back a person unaware that an under- construction building belonged to a legislator from Rangareddy district demanded Rs 2 lakh from the contractor. It is a different thing altogether that the person has not been seen ever since he came to know that the site belonged to the MLA.

“Not only me but many of those who have constructed houses have paid `mamool’ to the goons, who had warned that failure to oblige, would result in halting further construction,” said Mohammed Shakeel from Shaheenagar.

“If we report the matter to the police, hamara jeena haram kar dete, koi aur rasta nahi hai hamare paas,” he said, adding that he had to shell down Rs 2 lakh after his wife insisted that they shift to Aziz Bagh.

Akeel Ahmed Khan of Chanchalguda said “their numbers increased during the lockdown. They target every person but spare those having a clout. Recently I got my house constructed near Talabkatta. Even before the pillars came up, two people approached me and demanded Rs 2 lakh.”

“When I refused they warned me that they would not allow unloading of any construction material. Eventually, I ‘closed the deal’ at Rs 55,000,” Shakeel added.

“We are waiting for such extortion and harassment complaints. The victim can directly contact me. I can assure stringent action against the culprits and the complainant’s identity will not be disclosed,” said G Chakravarthy, additional DCP, south zone task force.

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