Lucknow police Wednesday arrested a man impersonating as a close aide of BJP national president Amit Shah and duping those who sought party tickets for Assembly by-elections. The accused was also duping BJP workers by assuring them constitutional posts in the Central government. BJP leaders handed over Chaudhary Kunwar Singh to police at the state party headquarters on Tuesday night.
Police have registered an FIR at Hazratganj police station against Kunwar, hailing from Shrawasti district, under charges of cheating and forgery. Nearly Rs 4.55 lakh in cash, a gold ring, eight silver coins, a car, a fake receipt book with BJP printed on it, two fake identity cards of the party, ATM cards of five banks, a stamp of BJP national president and biodata of some candidates seeking BJP tickets have been recovered from him. Each biodata had fake stamp and signature of Amit Shah.
According to SP (East) Rajesh Kumar, the accused was posing as a BJP leader by the fake name of Pankaj Shah. He was staying in Lucknow’s Hotel Gomti where he had collected Rs 5 lakh on August 11 from a person, assuring him a BJP ticket from Balha Assembly seat of Bahraich district. Kunwar had also assured one Prem Chandra Chaudhary of a ticket from Sirathu Assembly segment. He was also taking donations for the party fund by issuing fake receipts.
While he was operating from Hotel Gomti, Kunwar had taken two houses on rent in Gomti Nagar and Jankipuram Extension colonies. His family resides in Gomti Nagar.
Police have registered the FIR on the complaint of BJP state headquarters in-charge Bharat Dixit. Party’s state president Laxmikant Bajpai said he had received information that Kunwar was carrying out such activities since Lok Sabha elections. “We were keeping watch on Kunwar at Hotel Gomti for the past three days. He was staying in the hotel with a fake identity and had entered a fake address of C-333, Gandhi Nagar, Gujarat,” Bajpai added
Kunwar had been collecting applications and biodata of ticket seekers and met the aspirants at the hotel. The accused put fake stamp and signature of Amit Shah on applications with a remark to submit a report in four days if the applicant was eligible for an Assembly ticket or for constitutional posts in the Centre. He also marked PF (money for party fund) on behalf of the party’s national president.
In order to nab the impersonator, two BJP leaders — state secretary Virendra Tiwari and Lucknow Mahanagar vice-president Manish Shukla — met Kunwar at the hotel on Tuesday evening and asked him to come to meet the state BJP president at the UP party headquarters.
BJP leaders said Kunwar tried to escape but was nabbed and brought to the headquarters. Initially, he tried to mislead the party leaders, but later confessed about his activities before Bajpai who called the police and handed him over.
BJP also checked the video-recordings of CCTV cameras installed at the party office and found that Kunwar did not visit the office campus during past three months.