Ex-Indian hockey star Dhananjay Mahadik hopes new Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore will help him fight his case against fraud

Commonwealth Games silver-medalist Dhananjay Mahadik, who was also in the army for 15 years, has been cheated by a builder for Rs. 41 lakh.

In India, treating our sportsmen with disrespect seems to have become the norm. If you dig into recent matters, Yuvraj Walmiki was promised a house after his brilliant performance in the 2011 Asian Champions Trophy, by the then Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chauhan.

He, however, is yet to receive his house and still he is living in his 16 by 16 house with his family in Marine Lines near Mumbai.

And then there is the story for the day.

The Dhananjay Mahadik case

Dhananjay Mahadik has represented India in field Hockey in 64 games, has participated in the World Cup and also has a Commonwealth Games silver medal in his name. The former player was cheated by Mumbai based builder for Rs. 41 lakh, in the same year. Mahadik, who served the nation for 15 years in the Indian Army, had given Rs. 41 lakhs from his savings, match fees, awards as well as army retirement for two flats at Grant Road to Vinay Tripathi’s Mark Constructions in 2011.

A Mulund resident (location at Mumbai Suburban), he had booked flats at Grant Road for his convenience, so that he can reach the stadium for practice easily. Slater Road, near Grant Road station, is one of the prime locations in Mumbai city. Mukesh Ambani’s Antilia is not far from this location.

But it seems to have just been a dream for this ex-Army man even after six years. He did everything to get justice, but politics ruined his efforts and he became another victim.

Who is Vinay Tripathi?

Mahadik invested in Vinay Tripathi’s construction firm which was a redevelopment project. Tripathi, one of the promoters of his firm is one of the BJP leaders from Mumbai. He was a candidate for the Brihinmumbai Municipal Corporation elections earlier this year on a BJP ticket. And it is said that he is very close to BJP minister Vinod Tawde (Ministry of Sports, Maharashtra state).

However, Tripathi is not denying the fact of this matter. Speaking to Sportskeeda on the matter, Dhananjay Mahadik stated that Tripathi has told him that he wants to return the money but the owner of the building on which redevelopment project was proposed has filed a case in the Supreme Court and their firm’s bank accounts have been blocked by the court causing a delay in the project whilst reassuring that the project will start soon.

Countless promises

In the conversation with Dhananjay Mahadik who is now serving at the Income Tax department as an Assistant Commissioner said that he was cheated repeatedly by the builder.

Further enlightening on the issue, he stated, “When I made a booking in 2011, the promise was made by this builder that would be handed over by 2014. I was on tour during that period and hence was unable contact builder on regular basis.

“I realized the very next year (2012) when I came back from my tours that the construction of this redevelopment project had not started. I requested builder to return my money as it seemed there were no indications of starting this project.”

After multiple requests, to return money went unnoticed, Mahadik finally asked for help from the Police. “I have a FIR lodged in this case. After this, the builder promised that he would return my money by June same year, but since then he stopped answering my calls,” Mahadik added.

Now disillusioned by Tripathi’s claims Mahadik just wants justice, “If he had wanted to return my money, then he could have done it well before. Why has he not done in these six years so far?”

In the latest conversation, Mahadik revealed that he was come to know that there were some unauthorized transactions from the construction company for which court has blocked their bank accounts. If they have intentions to return my money, they would have done fair transactions within their company.

Mahadik is soon going to write to the newly appointed Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore to look into this matter and give justice to a former servant of the country on the Hockey Turf.

Rathore himself is an ex-sportsperson and an ex-Indian Army officer has promised to help the ministry a more welcoming body for the true heroes of the nation – it’s sportsmen upon being thrust with the responsibility of the Sports Ministry. While this was indeed a welcome appointment, sports people from across the nation know very well from previous experiences, actions speak louder than words.

Sportskeeda had made attempts to contact Tripathi regarding the matter but the endeavors were not met with success.

(This article first appeared in the Sportskeeda on September 11, 2017)