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Dawood Company and D-Company are terms coined by the Indian media for the Mumbai underworld organized criminal syndicate founded and controlled by Dawood Ibrahim, an Indian mafia don, drug dealer and wanted terrorist. In 2011, Ibrahim, along with his D-Company, was number three on the FBI's "World's 10 Most Wanted Fugitives" list.[2]

D Company
FounderDawood Ibrahim
Named afterDawood Ibrahim
Founding locationBombay, Maharashtra, India
Years active1970s–present
Leader(s)Dawood Ibrahim
Criminal activitiesMumbai underworld, Indian mafia, murder, extortion, targeted killing, drug trafficking, terrorism,[1] alleged involvement in 1993 Mumbai bombings
RivalsChhota Rajan, Ejaz Lakdawala, Arun Gawli
Notable membersDawood Ibrahim, Chhota Shakeel, Tiger Memon, Yakub Memon, Abu Salem



Dawood Ibrahim established a criminal syndicate in 1970s India.[3]

Other prominent members of the gang include Chhota Shakeel, Tiger Memon,[4] Yakub Memon (linked), and Abu Salem. The organization has a history of rivalry with the Mumbai police and other underworld dons such as Chhota Rajan, Ejaz Lakdawala, who was arrested in Canada in 2004, and Arun Gawli.


In the 1970s, Dawood Ibrahim worked for a local smuggler named Basu Dada. Basu Dada had a close friendship with Dawood's father, who was a police constable. However, Basu Dada and Dawood had a falling-out after Basu Dada insulted the latter's father. In 1976, Dawood — along with seven of his close friends and his elder brother Shabir Ibrahim Kaskar — attacked Basu Dada with empty soda bottles.

After this incident Basu Dada's key enforcer Khalid Phelewan persuaded Dawood to start his smuggling operations, which led to the formation of the D Company. Dawood and his elder brother Shabir, with the help of Khalid Phelewan, began their smuggling operations. This ultimately led them to clash with the Pathan gang, the most influential gang in Mumbai at the time. By 1986, D Company had eliminated most of the Pathan gang leadership, emerging as the dominant gang in Mumbai.

In 1993, D-Company associates were accused of organizing the 1993 Bombay bombings.[citation needed], although Dawood denies any involvement to this day.

In 1997, D-Company former member Abu Salem was responsible for the murder of T-Series founder and Bollywood music producer Gulshan Kumar.[5]

In 2011, Indian intelligence agencies managed to link Dawood Company with the 2G spectrum case, through DB Realty and DB Etisalat (formerly Swan Telecom) promoted by Shahid Balwa. Later in March, security at CBI headquarters in Delhi was tightened after it had been suggested that D-Company might launch an attack in an attempt to destroy documents relating to the ongoing probe of the 2G spectrum case.[6][7]

In 2015, a US Congressional report alleged that the D-Company was a "5,000-member criminal syndicate operating mostly in Pakistan, India, and the United Arab Emirates," which has a "strategic alliance" with ISI and has "forged relationships with Islamists, including Lashkar-e-Taiba and al-Qaida." However, the report had no political implications, and was mainly to brief lawmakers.[8]

In popular cultureEdit

At times, Dawood Company has been linked to the Bollywood film industry, as well as real estate and betting businesses, from which it is said to derive considerable revenue. The 2002 film Company is based loosely on its activities, as well as its sequel (prequel to the storyline) D (2005), Shootout at Lokhandwala (2007), and Once Upon a Time in Mumbai (2010).[9] The 2013 movie Shootout at Wadala is based on the rise of the D-Company. It also features in Salman Rushdie's 2018 novel The Golden House, where it is called Z-Company.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Shaikh, Dawood Hasan". Interpol. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  2. ^ "Dawood 4th 'most wanted' criminal on Forbes list". The Times of India. (29 April 2008). Retrieved 16 April 2012.
  3. ^ Husain, F. (12 March 1993). "1993 Mumbai blasts". BBC News.
  4. ^
  5. ^ "The Mafia Calls The Shots". Outlook. 25 August 1997.
  6. ^ "2G: Dawood planning to attack CBI HQ?". Zee News. 23 March 2011.
  7. ^ "Dawood threat to CBI over 2G probe?". The Times of India. 23 March 2011.
  8. ^ "Dawood is a terrorist, has 'strategic alliance' with ISI, says US - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  9. ^ "Akshay to play dreaded don Dawood?". Emirates247. 7 March 2011.

External linksEdit