The Gujarat Police has arrested an executive engineer, albeit a fake one who flaunted his government credentials and embezzled roughly Rs 4.15 crore for “tribal welfare”. He gathered the money for 93 plus tribal welfare schemes. He had also opened up his government office in Chhota Udepur district of Gujarat.
In the recent past, Kiran Patel and Mayank Tiwari have been caught claiming to be top men from PMO.
According to police, Sandip Rajput confidently introduced himself as an executive engineer and claimed to be associated with Gujarat Government’s Irrigation Department. He set up his base in Bodeli, in Chhota Udepur.
Bodeli. He set up a fake office too on July 21, 2021, and put a nameplate that described him ‘Executive Engineer, Irrigation Project Division, Bodeli’.
Rajput also forged documents, signatures and other documents to portray himself as a government official. He also acquired 93 government projects and received funds accumulating over Rs 4.15 crore.
A complaint was registered by Javed Maknojiya, working as a junior clerk in the administrative office of the District Collectorate. As per the FIR, the matter came to light when District Collector Sachin Kumar convened a meeting on October 25.
During the meeting, applications requesting for Rs 3.78 crores for 12 border village and lift irrigation projects were discussed, when officials realised that no office of the executive engineer existed in Bodeli.
After the investigation was launched, the District Collector sought details of the projects run by the Bodeli ‘office’ and found that Rajput had received Rs 4.15 crores since 2021, after which he and his associate Abu Bakr Saiyed were arrested.
In the past year, Gujarat has witnessed several fraud cases where the accused impersonate government officials including those from the Prime Minister’s and the Chief Minister’s Office. One of these cases involved conman Kiran Patel, who claimed to be a top Director handling strategies and campaigns in the PMO”.
Patel was arrested by the Ahmedabad City Detection of Crime Branch (DCB) in April after the Gujarat Police took his custody from Jammu and Kashmir. The police arrested many others including Viraj Patel, Nikunj Patel and Lavkush Patel, who claimed to be officials of the CMO.