Saturday, 30 April 2011

Attack on MIM leader Akbaruddin Owaisi: Who is Mohammad Bin Omer pahelwan?

By Syed Akbar
Hyderabad, April 30: Mohammad Bin Omer Yafai, the pahelwan (wrestler) who allegedly masterminded the attack on MIM leader Akbaruddin Owaisi, hails from the Al-Yafai tribe in Yemen. His forefathers, who served the Nizam as bodyguards, had settled in the Barkas (corruption of Barracks) area of the city.
Yafai is a family of free-style wrestlers and every male member is trained in body building right from the childhood. The family has now a little over a dozen wrestlers. Mohammad Bin Omer, a wrestler himself, had participated in national wrestling championships in late 1970s.
The wrestler owns restaurants and function halls, named after his father Omer, also a wrestler, in old city and runs a real estate firm dealing with lands in Barkas, Chandrayangutta, Pahadisharief, Bandlaguda and
Shamshabad.
Mohammad Bin Omer was a staunch supporter of the Majlis till a couple of years ago. It is alleged that due to the support he enjoyed from the MIM, the GHMC had changed the design of the flyover at Chandrayangutta to save his property. He even constructed a mosque beside his property, a function hall, just to protect it from demolition during the flyover works.
The trouble started after he went against the MIM leadership to side with its arch rival MBT. The pahelwan got the support of local media too during the last Assembly elections in 2009. Mohammad Bin Omer has been into real estate dealings for the last 20 years. The MIM had vacated the alleged encroachments on a government land by the pahelwan on a nine-acre plot at Ghousenagar in Bandlaguda, and distributed it among the poor.
The attack is linked to a dispute over a two-acre plot, which the MIM wants to convert into a graveyard. The MIM leadership secured government funds to construct a compound wall. While the Pahelwan claims that it is a private land, the MIM claimed it to be government land. Akbaruddin returning after participating in a programme to start works for the compound wall when the attack took place.

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