Padma Shri musician gets extortion call for Rs 50 lakh, Kolkata Police arrests 2

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Kolkata Police arrested two people for allegedly making death threats and extortion calls to music maestro and Padma Shri awardee Ustad Rashid Khan. Initial probe has revealed that the two arrested accused were the maestro’s newly joined employees.

Police sources told India Today that one accused, Avinash Bharti, was a driver employed by Ustad Rashid Khan and the other, Deepak Aulakh, was an office assistant who worked for a few days only before quitting.

Aulakh, after returning to Uttar Pradesh, used internet numbers and started making threatening calls to the maestro’s residence. He asked for Rs 50 lakh as “protection money”, then lowered the amount to Rs 20 lakh. Aulakh threatened that if not paid, he would kill Ustad Rashid Khan.

Bharti reportedly helped Aulakh by providing him details of their employer’s movements.

ALSO READ | Renowned tabla artiste Pt Subhankar Banerjee dies of Covid-19 at 54 in Kolkata

A case on October 9 under sections 385/34 of the Indian Penal Code, since amended to 387/120B IPC. Aulakh was apprehended and brought to Kolkata on transit remand. Both accused are in police custody. An investigation is underway.

Ustad Rashid Khan is an Indian classical musician in the Hindustani music tradition. He belongs to the Rampur-Sahaswan gharana, and is the great-grandson of gharana founder Inayat Hussain Khan.

ALSO READ | Crime Branch seeks former Mumbai cop Sachin Vaze’s custody in Goregaon extortion case

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