Pune News: Man poses as CMO official, dupes 2 colleges for admissions

Pune News: Man poses as CMO official, dupes 2 colleges for admissions

A complaint to this effect was lodged by Nitin U Pansare of the CMO with the Hinjewadi police station, Pune, which registered an FIR in the admission scam on Tuesday

FPJ News ServiceUpdated: Friday, May 26, 2023, 10:18 AM IST
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Accused Rahul Rajendra Palande | FPJ

The Pune police have arrested a man for posing as an official from the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) to secure admissions for four students at two major educational institutions. The accused has been identified as Rahul Rajendra Palande, 31, a resident of Keshavnagar, Pimpri-Chinchwad.

He had also posted photos with the CM on his social media profile. Palande showcased a true caller profile displaying the CMO and even created a WhatsApp message, posing as its PRO.

Scam exposed by college delegations

A complaint to this effect was lodged by Nitin U Pansare of the CMO with the Hinjewadi police station, Pune, which registered an FIR in the admission scam on Tuesday.

The lid from the scam blew off when a delegation of Symbiosis International University and another institution called on the CM at a function in Pune on Sunday. A member of the delegation informed the officials that following purported ‘requests’ from the CMO, they had given admissions to four students in Pune, Lavale, Hinjewadi and Bengaluru.

CMO 'rattled' by revelations

To prove the claim, the delegation member showed mobile screenshots of the person claiming to work for the CMO, and “asking for the admissions in the name of the CM”. Rattled by the revelations, the CMO launched an internal probe which confirmed that no such requests were made. They also discovered that the mobile numbers from which the admission requests were made did not belong to any CMO officials.

Palande has been charged under relevant sections of the IT Act for impersonation and misuse of government emblems and logos. He will remain in police custody until May 29. Senior police inspector Shankar Avtade said, “The complaint came from the CMO. The accused is a party worker of the Shinde group and misused the name of the CMO office. We are investigating how many admissions he secured and how many people have been duped.”

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