THE Ghaziabad police has decided to add charges of cheating and forgery in the accident involving an Audi Q7 that killed four people last week. The Indian Express reported on Saturday that the man who claimed to have been driving the SUV at the time and who gave his name as Ishaq Ahmed may have given a false identity.
“The Express story indicates that someone in the whole affair is lying and there is the possibility of impersonation in court. So we are going to either open a fresh case of cheating under Section 420 of the IPC or add these sections to the existing FIR. All the people involved in the production of Ishaq Ahmed in court will be suspects,” SSP Ghaziabad Deepak Kumar told The Sunday Express.
He also revealed that Dr Manish Rawat, the Safdarjung Hospital neurosurgeon in whose name the SUV is registered, too had given a statement to police under Section 161 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) that Ahmed was driving the vehicle at the time of the January 28 accident.
The man claiming to be Ahmed had appeared before the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate in Ghaziabad on January 31 and given a statement that he was driving the SUV. He had submitted a copy of a driving licence in the name of Ishaq Ahmed as part of judicial formality. Later, he had secured bail.
“The whole incident shows either the doctor is lying or Ishaq is lying or the person who appeared in the court is an imposter. After verifying the details, anyone from Rawat to Ishaq to those who appeared as security for the man claiming to be Ishaq Ahmed could be made accused in the case,” said SSP Deepak Kumar.
With Rawat still untraceable, his wife’s brother Akshay Tripathi, who is the sub-divisional magistrate of Urai sub-division in UP, told The Sunday Express Rawat was very much around and only avoiding the media. “Police had sent him a notice and he has replied to it reiterating what he told police already about who was driving the vehicle. As and when the investigation requires, he will appear before police,” said Tripathi.
Explaining the ‘Olive County’ parking sticker found on the Audi Q7 involved in the accident, Tripathi said it was his father K B Tripathi (Rawat’s father-in-law), a junior engineer with the state government, who lived in the residential complex in Ghaziabad.
Asked about police preparing to investigate if a man had impersonated as Ishaq Ahmed in court, Tripathi said, “What I have learnt is that the media has got hold of a different man with the same name. Anyway, things will be clear when Ahmed appears in court.”
Tripathi said Rawat was a “brilliant doctor” and “loving father” who rose from a humble background in Agra to become a successful neurosurgeon. Rawat’s father retired as a government servant years ago.
Most of the 35-year-old doctor’s former colleagues in Bareilly also describe him as a “brilliant doctor”, though “erratic”. Said Amitabh Drona, executive secretary to President of Mission Hospital in Bareilley, where Rawat worked for about one and a half years, “Rawat could handle complicated cases and saved lives when there was no hope. But he was a tad unprofessional. He would disappear after a surgery without caring for what would happen if complications arose.”
According to Drona, Rawat suddenly quit Mission Hospital on October 24, 2015, while 12 patients were still under his care. “He had some tiff with us and just walked out. He was the only neurosurgeon we had. We filed a complaint against him with the Medical Council.”
Drona also claimed Rawat loved cars. “He would often say he wanted to drive an Audi.”
At Gangasheel Hospital in the city where Rawat moved next, they claim to have had the same problem with him. Said its administrator Chaitanya Gawade, “Rawat was a very good doctor, but took too many leaves. At times 10 days in a month. Patients would have to go back because the doctor was not around.”
A physiotherapist who has worked with Rawat and did not want to identified said he was “aggressive” and got “irritated easily” and “interfered in everyone’s work”.
Tripathi dismissed the complaints regarding Rawat’s “unprofessionalism”. “He had some payment issues with the hospitals in Bareilly. Probably, that’s why they have negative things to say about him,” Tripathi said.
The same month as Rawat joined Gangasheel he bought the Audi. In June 2016, he moved to Delhi after getting a call from Safdarjung Hospital.
On Saturday, the mother of the Ishaq Ahmed who lives at the address mentioned in the driving licence submitted to court, in Bareilly’s Labhera village, struggled to make out if the person whose photograph was in the document was her son. As relatives said the photograph closely resembled Ahmed, Saira Bano said one way to distinguish her son was that he had a mole on his left cheek.
The family and villagers had told the Express on Friday that at the time Ahmed is said to have presented himself before the Ghaziabad court, between 12 noon and 4.30 pm on January 31, he was in the village. Ahmed’s family had also said he was a truck driver currently somewhere in Assam.
Speaking to the Express over phone, Ahmed said Saturday that he had handed over the truck to another driver and was rushing back to Bareilly to “clear my name”.