2 conmen posing as Amit Shah offer poll ticket to former MLA; booked

Mastermind still elusive


Lucknow:  Bareilly police on Thursday booked two conmen under IPC sections 204 (destruction of electronic record), 392 (robbery), 420 (cheating) and relevant sections of the Information Technology (Amendment) Act 2008 for trying to dupe ex-MLA Kishan Lal Rajput from Barkheda constituency of Pilibhit by calling him up posing as Union home minister Amit Shah and offering him a ticket for the Lok Sabha elections in exchange for an unidentified sum.

One of the accused men, Ravinder Maurya, called up Kishan Lal around nine times from Jan 4 to 20 from a Whatsapp number which had Shah’s photo as the display picture, inspector Vinod Kumar, who filed the FIR on behalf of UP Police. The ‘Truecaller’ identity of the number was mentioned as ‘Home Ministry’. However, Kishan Lal grew suspicious and informed the police which eventually zeroed in on Maurya.

His associate and mastermind Shahid Khan is on the run, said police.

SP Bareilly (rural) Mukesh Kumar Mishra said, “We had been receiving information about the gang exploiting high-profile identities to deceive public representatives and leaders, promising them election tickets in return for money. Our teams conducted investigations into the matter. Shahid Khan, the mastermind, is currently evading arrest, but our teams are actively pursuing him. Khan has a history of duping people and has previously been incarcerated in Lucknow jail. Further probe is on.”

Inspector Kumar further stated, “When our team summoned Maurya, he destroyed the SIM card before appearing for questioning. However, we traced the number to Harish Kumar, who disclosed that Ravinder and Shahid forcibly took possession of the phone SIM card in Dec last year. All three individuals are residents of the Nawabganj area of Bareilly.”

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