Ahmedabad police books conman Kiran Patel for grabbing elderly man’s Bungalow

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The Ahmedabad Police have lodged a first information report against Kiran Patel, who was arrested by the Jammu and Kashmir Police for posing as an official of the prime minister’s office (PMO), and his wife, Malini, for trying to grab a bungalow in a posh locality of the city.

The complaint was filed by an Ahmedabad-based senior citizen, Jagdish Chavda, who accused the duo of cheating on the pretext of renovating his bungalow, the Indian Express reported.

Interesting, this complaint was filed last year, but it was converted into an FIR only this month, the Hindu reported.

Patel had approached him in February 2022, as Chavda wanted to sell his house, the complaint said. The bungalow is located in the Shilaj locality of western Ahmedabad.

Patel, who claimed to be a real estate agent, told Chavda that the property would go for a higher value if it was renovated before being sold.

He had also told Chavda that he was a “Class I officer in the PMO” and was connected to a “big Adani project” for winning the trust of the house owner.

Chavda said that Patel had managed to win his trust by dropping names of well-known people. He had also claimed to be a partner in a prominent cafe chain.

Thereafter, he agreed to get the bungalow renovated.

He added that Patel, Malini and an interior designer started the renovation work on his bungalow and took Rs 35 lakh from him in installments. However, Patel later claimed ownership of the property and filed a civil suit in a local court.

It was then that Chavda approached the police with his complaint, which has now been converted into an FIR, as earlier mentioned.

The case has been lodged under Sections 420 (cheating), 406 (criminal breach of trust), 120-B (criminal conspiracy) and 170 (misrepresenting oneself as a public servant) of the Indian Penal Code.

Police action

Ahmedabad Crime Branch deputy commissioner of police Chaitanya Mandlik told mediapersons on Friday, March 24 that the police have found Patel is involved in other cases of cheating as well.

“According to our information, four cases related to cheating have already been registered against Kiran Patel in various police stations in Gujarat. Right now, he is in judicial custody, so we will try to bring him here through a transfer warrant,” The Hindu quoted the officer as saying.

The police added that more such cases are likely to come up against him and his aides, as an investigation has been initiated into the activities of Patel.

Meanwhile, in a related development, additional public relations officer (PRO) in the Gujarat chief minister’s office (CMO), Hitesh Pandya, resigned after the arrest of his son Amit Pandya by the Jammu and Kashmir police, the Indian Express reported. Amit had accompanied Kiran Patel during his trips to the northern state.

Pandya (73) has served under five chief ministers – including Keshubhai Patel, Narendra Modi, Anandiben Patel, Vijay Rupani and Bhupendra Patel – for nearly 22 years.

“Nobody asked me to resign. I felt I should resign. I will wind up my pending work by March 31 and be relieved from the office,” the newspaper quoted him as saying.

He said that his 43-year-old son, Amit, had gone to J-K this month along with Patel “for business purpose”, with his consent. The Wire had earlier reported how Amit and another man, Jay Sitapara, who were accompanying Patel when he was arrested, were summoned by the J-K police for questioning and later arrested in connection with the ‘fake PMO official’ case.

Pandya said that his son had gone with Patel to J-K “for business purpose…He wanted to put forward a business proposal related to CCTVs.” He added that his son dealt in home security appliances, like CCTV cameras, through his firm Safe Solution.

He also acknowledged that Amit was the Bharatiya Janata Party’s social media cell convener in Gujarat’s north zone till January this year. “As part of party reshuffle, he was relieved of his responsibilities as convener of the party’s social media cell’s north zone in January this year,” he told the Indian Express.

The former CMO official denied that Patel had any links to the office but admitted that he was associated with a private organisation, Nation First Foundation, which was floated by him in 2011. “I started it in 2011 to propagate Modi saheb’s ideas. I am the founder of the organisation…Our work was only related to serving the nation. Then we had done a Bharat Jago Abhiyan to create awareness among people towards the BJP government’s works and projects… He (Kiran Patel) came into contact because he was with Amit. And he joined NFF,” Pandya said.

On the association between Amit and Patel, he said: “They were working in a publicity company in 2004. And I know him as Amit’s friend… But in 2011 itself, I realised that he (Kiran) was not a person to be kept with us. So, I relieved him and all the people with him (from NFF)…I did not find his dealings and billing proper…Then, he (Kiran Patel) started his own organisation”.

Pandya said while his son and Patel had a purely business relationship all these years, things changed after Amit survived a critical medical situation due to a “rare heart condition” in September 2022.

“I had written a story about that in some newspapers. He (Kiran) read it and reached the hospital to see Amit. After that, he increased his contact with Amit. Then, he told Amit that he has a lot of work in Kashmir and he can go with him,” he told the daily, adding that Amit had gone to the state with his permission. 

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