Hyderabad, June 11: They neither figure in the list of top businessmen, nor do they live like wealthiest men of the historic city of Hyderabad. None of them is related either. But still, the “Deadly Dozen” or “Dirty Dozen”, as they are called in limited circles, controls almost one-third of city’s economy.
The gang is a combination of some top politicians of different parties, businessmen, hawala operators, realtors, bureaucrats, hoteliers and educationists. They support each other in all their endeavors and have been maintaining their dominance that they have built about seven years ago. Every big land deal in the city passes through them. They get a share in every medical, engineering or any other seat sold (by taking donation) in top colleges. They have indirect control over a majority of big cable operators in the city.
The story of the Deadly Dozen sounds like the script of a Bollywood movie. But it is not fictional.
It was in 2006-07 when the gang members came closer due to large real estate dealings they indulged in. Large chunks of prime lands in and around Hyderabad were properly identified and then purchased by the gang members. While the politicians used their clout, the businessmen raised huge funds. Those with hawala connections re-routed the black money to the city from Gulf and other countries. Some educationists and others with apparently non-political and non-controversial backgrounds were used to purchase the lands on benami accounts.
Some ministers and bureaucrats were used by the Deadly Dozen Gang to modify GOs in order to gain control over lands originally owned by government, defense and other institutions. Several officials in the Revenue and other related department are allegedly on the pay rolls of this gang.
According to sources, all the gang members were initially pawns into the hands of another top politician who later passed away in an accident. Soon after his death, the gang members not only continued their friendship, but strengthened it to expand their influence in other areas.
Crores of rupees earned through real estate was diverted towards establishing big educational institutions. The politicians used their influence in getting permissions for the colleges and other institutions. Within few years, huge infrastructure worth several hundred crores was established. The same is now being used to earn money by selling seats in medical, engineering and other professional colleges in the State.
In view of huge demand for seats in colleges, the sale of seats in management quota in some colleges was centralised and then outsourced. One of the gang member purchases almost all the seats in different colleges by making a huge payment in advance. He later earns profit by selling the seats at exorbitant rates. For instance, seats in a medical college located close to Hyderabad were sold for an average of Rs 80 lakh each last year. This year, the rate is much higher.
Having established their domination in the real estate and education, the gang also concentrated its energies on textiles and other business. Dozens of wedding and shopping malls have come up in the city in the recent past. The gang has invested crores of rupees on building, interiors and purchasing stock for a few leading malls. The turnover of those malls is quite negligible compared to the investment. But those malls were not established to earn profits. It was one of the safe means to park black money.
We have been hearing stories of some colleges collecting huge money for medical, engineering and other seats. Have we ever given a thought on how those donations are received and disbursed? The Deadly Dozen gang has formulated a safe and centralised system to receive such donations. The candidates are asked to bring DDs in limited denominations in favour of some fake and real institutions. The DDs are encashed by always-loss making institutions and then the money gets transferred to other accounts. After three to four levels of transactions, the amount reaches the foreign or local accounts of these gang members.
According to rough estimates, the cumulative worth of the Deadly Dozen is over Rs 5,000 crore.
(To Be Continued…For feedback mail to )