Hyderabad (The Hawk): Ramachandra Bharati, the primary suspect in the poaching case against the TRS MLAs, is in possession of two passports, the Telangana Police's Special Investigation Team (SIT) investigation has discovered.
Bharati, one of the three defendants who was already being held in custody by the court, has now been charged with having two passports in two different identities.
Due to a complaint made by Assistant Commissioner of Police B. Gangadhar, a member of the SIT, a case has been opened against him at the Banjara Hills police station.
The police charged Bharati with violating sections 12 of the 1967 Passports Act as well as IPC sections 467 (forgery of valuable security, will, etc.), 468 (forgery with the intent to defraud), and 471 (using as genuine a forged document).
Both Bharat Kumar Sharma and Shree Ramachandra Swami Ji are names on the accused's passports.
The passports were issued in Karnataka in 2019 and feature several birth dates as well as various residences in Puttur.
This was discovered by the SIT when it examined the laptop and iPhone that had been taken from RBharati by the Cyberabad police on October 26 during a search of a farmhouse in Moinabad, close to Hyderabad.
He was detained together with two other suspects, Simhayaji and Nanada Kumar, while attempting to entice four TRS MLAs to defect to the BJP by offering them substantial sums of money.
Concerned officials will receive letters from the SIT asking for further information about the passports.
The investigators are looking into whether the suspect travelled overseas using both passports.
Forgery led to Bharati's arrest earlier this month. Pilot Rohit Reddy, a TRS MLA, filed a complaint, and Banjara Hills police arrested him for having fraudulent PAN, Aadhaar, and driver's licences.
Bharati, a priest from Faridabad in the state of Haryana, is said to be in close contact with several important BJP figures.
On November 3, Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao held a press conference and unveiled images of Bharati's various identification documents.
He allegedly has driving permits, PAN cards, and Aadhaar under the names Shree Ramachandra Swami Ji and V. K. Satish Sharma.
This was a piece of the evidence that the chief minister presented in the controversial case that caused political tremors.
Bharati was detained by Cyberabad police on October 26 during a raid on a farm house in Moinabad, close to Hyderabad, along with Simhayaji, a pontiff from Tirupati, and Nanda Kumar, the proprietor of a restaurant in Hyderabad.
Pilot Rohit Reddy, who said that the accused offered him $100 million and $50 million to each of the other three people, provided the police with the tip that led to the arrests.
(Inputs from Agencies)