With the hunt for the killers of Sharad Shetty continuing, a senior police officer has reassured the business community that Dubai is a safe and secure place.

Major General Sharafuddin Mohammed Hussain Sharaf, Assistant Commander-in-Chief for Criminal Investigative Affairs, said: "This is an isolated incident and we do not expect any repercussions." Shetty, 43, was gunned down by two men in front of shocked members of the India Club on Sunday night.

Children were playing a basketball game at the time of the shooting. "We are questioning a number of suspects who may have connections to the crime," Maj Gen Sharafuddin said.

He added that the hunt has intensified.

He urged anyone with any information to contact the police and noted that any information will be treated with the strictest of confidentiality.

Meanwhile, the owner of a chain of hotels that was linked to the slain Indian businessman in yesterday's reports has denied that his hotels were a front for Sharad Shetty.

Varadaraj Manjappa Shetty, better known as Raj Shetty, the Chairman and Managing Worker of the Ramee Group of Hotels, told Gulf News yesterday that "my interaction with the underworld is zero."

"We have no business links with Sharad Shetty, there was no investment made by him in our hotels," he added.

Raj Shetty said that they shared the same last name as both men are from Mangalore in southern India, where that name is common.

He said he had no contact with the deceased except when he visited his hotels. "The investments in Regent Palace or Regal are mine, not anybody else's. I have built it to a 16-chain hotel of 2,000 employees from scratch," he said, although admitting that the slain Shetty was a frequent visitor.

"We like big spenders," said Raj Shetty, who has hotels in Bahrain and India, adding "we run a hotel, we cannot turn anyone away, unless they make a nuisance of themselves."