Conman from Gujarat posing as PMO official in J&K held
A conman from Gujarat who visited Jammu and Kashmir posing as an additional director for strategy and campaigns at the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) was arrested for cheating and forgery during his third visit on March 3. Straight from a movie plot, the accused, identified as Kiran J Patel, got Z-plus security, a bulletproof SUV, and official accommodation at a five-star hotel in Srinagar.
He claimed he was sent to check hotel facility improvements
Reportedly, he traveled to several tourist spots in the Kashmir Valley, claiming that the government had sent him to check for improvements in hotel facilities in the area and identify buyers for apple orchards in South Kashmir. His arrival at the airport on March 2, however, raised suspicion among security agencies as there was no information regarding any VIP movement.
He fooled IAS officers by name-dropping bigwigs
Patel posted pictures with paramilitary guards on Twitter
Officials reportedly attempted to stop him at the airport, but he had already slipped into his bulletproof SUV. Later, he was questioned and forged identity cards were recovered from his possession. In some of his Twitter posts, he can be seen visiting various locations with paramilitary guards. Notably, he met administrative officials during his previous two visits.
Has verified Twitter account followed by BJP's Gujarat general secretary
On Thursday, the police produced him in court, which extended his remand. He has a verified Twitter account with over a thousand followers, including the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) Gujarat unit's general secretary, Pradipsinh Vaghela. In his Twitter bio, he claimed to have a PhD from Commonwealth University, Virginia, an MBA from IIM Trichy, an MTech in Computer Science, and BE in Computer Engineering.