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Mumbai Cop Seizes Student's Cellphone For Clicking Ambani Home

PTI 01 Dec 2010, 10:58:28 IST
Mumbai:  Fourth-year law student Dharmin Sampat from Ghatkopar  East learnt a lesson the hard way when a policeman caught him clicking photographs of the newest Mukesh Ambani home Antilia. The cop wanted to take him to his superiors for questioning, reports MidDay.

According to Sampat, he had partially rolled down the window of his car to click pictures when a policeman thought his behaviour was suspicious and approached him.

"I had clicked the first shot and was attempting to click another when a policeman in uniform came close to my car and asked 'Idhar kya kar raha hai'. I thought he was objecting to the tinted windows," Sampat said.

"But before I could clarify, he said, 'Photo kyon kheech raha hai, photo kheechna mana hai' and took the mobile phone from me. I tried to persuade him, but he was adamant and kept insisting that I should accompany him to his superior, pointing towards a police van parked nearby," he added.

"I was shocked. There was no notice board which said photography was prohibited," Sampat recalled.

He claimed that the policeman asked for a bribe initially but then returned his cellphone and let him go after a lot of begging and cajoling.

"The constable was co-operative and did not take me to his superior, he left the place soon after," he said.

Justifying his decision to click pictures of Antilia, Sampat said the images would have helped his friends, who are doing a course in architecture. "I have read that Antilia is one of the most architecturally sound structures in the country. I thought my friends would be interested in learning about it.  But now, I have cautioned my friends against clicking pictures of it and have decided not to repeat the mistake myself as well," he said.

Asked whether he had taken down any details of the policeman, Sampat said the thought didn't strike him as he was caught by a policeman for the first time and was scared.

A local said that the entire stretch of Altamount Road has a strong police bandobast even on normal days as the Japanese, South African, Indonesian and Belgian consulates are in the vicinity.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone) Anil Khumbare said, "The incident shows that our policemen were alert. Anybody found moving or acting in a suspicious manner is bound to be questioned, there is nothing wrong in it."

Antilia has the distinction of being the world's first billion-dollar home and took nearly four years to complete. Nita Ambani reportedly wanted to ensure that no two floors are alike in either plans or materials used and, thus, a particular type of wood used on the 16th floor, for example, has not been used again in any other floor.