HYDERABAD: In perhaps a rare operation in the old city of Hyderabad, a huge contingent of nearly 100 policemen on Thursday raided several houses of history-sheeters who are running micro-finance business by collecting huge interests and harassing the poor.
Expectedly, the sleuths faced stiff resistance and not only abuses but footwear were also hurled at them in full public view. Some local ruffians even let loose their Doberman dogs at the sleuths when they tried to enter their premises. Nonetheless, the police held 12 persons for extortion and registered cases under the Telangana State Money Lending Act. The crackdown on financiers was triggered by Wednesday’s murder of a borrower, Mohammed Ahmed, allegedly by some financiers. For several years financiers in the old city have been giving loans to the needy at high interest rates and harassing them if they do not repay promptly.
On Thursday morning, more than 100 policemen, armed with search orders and led by DCP V Satyanarayana, carried out raids in Madannapet, Yakutpura, Santoshnagar, Kalapathar, Bahadurpura, Dabeerpura, Moghalpura and Mirchowk police limits, and arrested 12 persons for harassing poor people by providing loans at high interest rates. But the real drama began when the sleuths descended on the house of a dismissed constable-turned micro-financier Jaffer Pahelwan and two others Salam Pahelwan and Mohammed Pahelwan at Yakutpura.
Initially, the Pahelwans had locked the gates and let loose their Doberman dogs to ensure that no policeman could enter their premises. Policemen then climbed over his gate and called them out. Jaffar is learnt to have yelled back at the police, asking them to leave the place. He also asked them if they had come with a warrant. After much argument, policemen forced their way into the house, took the Pahelwans into custody.
Similar raids were carried out elsewhere in the old city. Police arrested T Rachappa, Mohammed Amjad Hussain, R Balasubramaian and N Yadaiah in Madannapet; Syed Moimin Pahsa in Kalapathar; A Srinivas in Mir Chowk; Mokala Govind in Moghalpura; Srinivas in Chandrayanagutta; A Ashok Kumar Yadav and K Saidi Reddy in Santoshnagar; and Mohammed Kareemuddin in Bahadurpura.
“It has come to our notice that the incidence of harassment by private micro- financiers is growing in the locality. They are collecting interests as high as 30 to 40 pc from poor people such as vegetable vendors, push-cart hawkers and others. These merciless operators even subject the hapless borrowers sometimes to torture. They demand higher rate of interest and threaten to seize household goods in case of non-payment. Besides, they are committing atrocities on women and aged persons,” the DCP said.