Kiran Patel managed to infiltrate a sensitive area in J&K using his RSS connections.
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Alleged Gujarat-based conman ‘Dr’ Kiran J. Patel’s “officer-like attitude”, sharp dressing style, and purported connections with the upper echelons of the BJP served him well while he posed as a top PMO official in J&K — until his limited knowledge of bureaucracy is believed to have betrayed him.
His failure to differentiate between an IAS and IPS officer cemented suspicions and helped blow his cover, intelligence sources told ThePrint.
Currently lodged in Srinagar’s Central jail, Patel has been accused of cheating, forgery, and impersonation, all charges that he has refuted as being “baseless”, according to reports. Meanwhile, at least three older cases of alleged cheating lodged against Patel in Gujarat have also surfaced, with a fresh FIR being filed in one last week.
Two Gujarat businessmen who allegedly travelled with Patel — Amit Hitesh Pandya and Jay Sitapara — have been questioned by police too. The former’s father, Hitesh Pandya, resigned from his post as additional public relations officer in Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel’s office last Friday over the scandal.
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Yet, for several months, Kiran Patel allegedly managed to hoodwink the Jammu & Kashmir police and civil administration by introducing himself as the additional director (strategy & campaign) in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
During four visits between October 2022 and March 2023, he travelled around the Union territory as a VVIP, with Z-plus-equivalent security cover, including bulletproof vehicles, gunmen, and escort vehicles, although this is said to have never been sanctioned through the prescribed official channels.
Patel was also provided access to some of the most strategically sensitive locations in J&K, including Uri near the Line of Control, where he clicked pictures, made reels, and posted them on social media.
He stayed at five-star properties, took “briefings” from officers, and met business owners across districts. He apparently made a lot of promises too.
Sources in the J&K intelligence establishment said Patel promised business owners generous “investments” for the development of Kashmir and held out the carrot of “plum postings” to officers who obliged him with a security cover without due clearance from the necessary authorities.
These officers, sources said, included Pulwama deputy commissioner (DC) Baseer-Ul-Haq Chaudhary and Kashmir senior superintendent of police (security) Sheikh Zulfikar Azad.
The Jammu and Kashmir police acknowledged the arrest of the fake PMO officer Kiran Bhai Patel two weeks later after a local news outlet in Srinagar broke the story on March 17, but the affair still remains unsolved.
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