Two months after a fake Covid-19 vaccination drive was unearthed at a residential complex in Kandivali (West), a 2,000-page chargesheet was filed at the Borivali Magistrate Court on Friday. According to the police, 11 accused have been named, including the mastermind Mahendra Singh and the owners of Shivam Hospital Dr. Shivraj and Nita Pataria.
A senior police official investigating the first fake vaccination drive conducted at Hiranandani Heritage, Kandivali (West), said that the police booked the 11 accused --Mahendra Singh, Rajesh Pandey, Qareem Ali, Rahul Dubey, Sanjay Gupta, Dr Manish Tripathi, Chandan Singh, Nitin Mode, Gudiya Yadav, Dr Shivraj Pataria and his wife Nita, under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), Disaster Management Act, Epidemic Disease Act and Information Technology Act. The police had also added section 308 of the IPC for attempting to commit culpable homicide and for having intention or knowledge that their act could cause death. The sections of the IT Act were added for making fake vaccination certificates against Gudiya Yadav, Chandan Singh and Nitin Mode.
The Kandivali police have recorded statements of at least 450 people, including the 390 residents of Hiranandani Heritage and Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) officials, who said that the drive was unauthorised. A senior police officer said, while there was no chemical report or analysis to claim that the vaccines administered were fake, the case has been built on circumstantial evidence and the statements of the accused as well as the victims.
Six people have been turned approver and police witnesses. Their statements were recorded before a Magistrate Court, said the police. The fake vaccination drive held at Hiranandani Heritage was allegedly set up by Mahendra Singh along with his aides Sanjay Gupta and Rajesh Pandey, who claimed that the drive was conducted by Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital in Andheri. The con, however, came to light when the residents received vaccination certificates with wrong dates from the hospital, which was not minutely involved in the drive.
After the residents received questionable certificates, they began making enquiries with the hospitals mentioned in the certificates, only to realise that neither Kokilaben Hospital nor the ones mentioned in the certificates had conducted any such drive.
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