Sooner or later, we will hear news about Dawood's end : Sheela Raval, Journalist
Updated on: 19 Dec 2015
'After Rajan is back in India, our resident dons are almost down. I won't say that they are out. So, now the obvious question is about Dawood, and the present government, I think, is more than willing to address that issue.'
'I think the political system made this kind of people; the corporate world made this kind of people. I have mentioned in my book that even the banks were using these outlaws to get their money back.'
Sheela Raval, author of a new book on India's gangsters, offers rare insight into their lives and times.
Journalist Sheela Raval's Godfathers Of Crime: Face-to-Face with India's Most Wanted gives a glimpse into the lives of gangsters like Dawood Ibrahim, Chhota Shakeel, Abu Salem, Chhota Rajan, Arun Gawli among many others.
The book delves deeply into how some of these gangsters fled abroad and built billion dollar empires, hobnobbed with global terrorists, international drug cartels and intelligence agencies of various countries, compromising themselves and exposing them to be used as pawns by these agencies.
In a freewheeling two-part interview with Prasanna D Zore/Rediff.com, Raval says, "A good journalist should read the signs," when asked how Chhota Rajan's arrest will affect Dawood Ibrahim.
Ask her about what made her take the risks that she took in her three decade career in journalism, Raval says, "(It was the ) typical Gujarati mindset... that if I fail, it will be a huge learning, but if I get any success on the way then I'd have hit the jackpot. I feel I was lucky. But there was huge struggle and pain."
The interview at a cosy restaurant in Delhi's Khan Market on the coldest day so far in the capital this year.
Why you felt like writing this book?
During the course of my career after I would break stories about the underworld, people had so many questions. 'How did you go about it? What did you do? How did you make contacts? Why do they trust you?'
These kind of questions were always asked of me. I thought of answering all these questions.
The other reason is there is nothing that explains or throws light on how these gangsters' lives changed after they escaped to foreign shores. I tried to put every piece together to draw a bigger picture.
That Dawood Ibrahim was known to Mumbai and the media is a different personality than what he has evolved into, a global terrorist. There are many nuances to the stories of these gangsters which were missed out by the media during reporting.
I was very surprised when he was designated by the United Nations as a global terrorist. The obvious question to me was why was the UN was interested in Dawood and what did he do to deserve that tag.
This had many international nuances and a curious me began to delve into these questions and my book has tried to answer these questions.
Are you satisfied with the way the book has shaped into?