After 41 years, man convicted for impersonating landlord’s missing son

A person, who fraudulently claimed to be the missing son of a big landlord in Bihar’s Nalanda district and even became heir to his property, has been unmasked after 41 years.

The court of Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Manwendra Mishra has convicted accused Dayanand Gosai under various sections of the IPC sections including cheating and criminal conspiracy and sent him to jail.

The case was similar to many Bollywood blockbusters where someone replaced the son of a rich man due to similar looks and personality.

In this case, the story began way back in 1977 when Kanhaiya Singh, son of big landlord Kameshwar Singh went to Chandi block for a examination but never returned home. A missing complaint was registered in the Silaw police station.

In 1981, a beggar, who was later identified as Gosai, came to Morgawan village and went door to door seeking alms. When some villagers ask him about his identity, he said that he is Kanhaiya Singh, son of Kameshwar Singh.

As Kameshwar Singh was called to the spot, the beggar greeted him and called “Papa”.

As it was five years, no one could identify him properly, but as Gosai gave information related to Kanhaiya Singh and his family, Kameshwar Singh accepted him as his missing son and took him to the house.

However, Kanhaiya Singh’s mother Ramsakhi Devi, was not convinced and refused to accept him as a son, citing some physical features of her son that were absent in him.

While the elderly Kameshwar Singh, 75, had under the beggar’s and villagers’ persuasion, accepted Gosai as his missing son, Ramsakhi Devi filed a case against him, alleging that he was a fraud and seeking he not be allowed to inherit the property.

However, after a few years, Ramsakhi Devi died due to illness and elderly age, and as Kameshwar Singh had already accepted him as son, a local Nalanda court declared Gosai as his heir.

Kameshwar Singh was having two shopping cum residential complexes in Patna with each spread in 15 kathas and worth more than Rs 200 crore at current market price. Besides 150 bighas agricultural land in Morgawan village, he owned two buildings and some more residential plots in the village.

Gosai now started living a luxurious life, especially after Kameshwar Singh also passed away.

However, Vidya Singh, the daughter of Kameshwar and Ramsakhi Devi, continued her mother’s fight. She challenged the decision of Nalanda court in the Patna High Court but it ruled in favour of Gosai.

Vidya Singh then went to the Supreme Court, which ruled that the case has several points which need investigation. It had also observed that a case cannot be rejected on the basis of death of a complainant.

Following that decision, the hearing of the fraud case started again in a Nalanda court, but saw may delays.

Three months ago, ACJM Mishra directed the judicial officers to start speedy trials of every case lodged before 2000. This case came to his notice and he directed it be heard on a daily basis.

“During the hearing of the case, we have submitted proof that the person who posed as Kanhaiya Singh is actually Dayanand Gosai, son of Prabhu Gosai, a native of Jamui district,” said Dr Rajesh Pathak, the prosecution lawyer.

“We managed to find three persons named Nandan, Vishnu Gosai and a Chokidar of the village who identify him as Dayananand Gosai, younger son of Prabhu Gosai. During the hearing, we demanded for the DNA test of the alleged person which he denied,” he added.

“As Kanhaiya Singh disappeared in 1977, and ‘returned home’ in 1981, Gosai, when asked by the court to provide proof about where he resided during this period, did not have convincing answers or any proof,” Pathak said.

He also noted that the villagers of Morgawan said that when Kameshwar Singh died, he did not come for the last rites.

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