“If Ahmed Patel was a patron of hospital from where 2 suspected ISIS terrorists were arrested then should he be not held responsible?” asked Chief Minister Vijay Rupani at a press conference after the arrest of two suspected terrorists by Gujarat ATS. One of the two suspects had worked and recently resigned from Sardar Patel Hospital where Congress leader Ahmed Patel was once a Trustee. With elections around the corner, this information was enough to set in motion a barrage of claims and counterclaims by both parties. Alt News examines the claims and documents that have been shared on social media.
Soon after the controversy broke out, Siddharth Mazumdar (@sidmtweets) posted a set of images to prove that Patel had resigned as a Trustee way back in 2013 whereas the suspect Mohmad Kasim Stimberwala had joined and resigned in March and October 2017.
This was followed by an article that posted an image of the statement of the hospital.
Doubts have been raised regarding the veracity of the above images as to whether the documents are genuine or not.
1.Handwritten resignation letter of AP without any stamp.Very convenient
2. Hospitals disclaimer dated 29/10//2017.It's 28th today
3. Idiots https://t.co/cqEeb1OtWu
— दिव्या (@divya_16_) October 28, 2017
Let us examine each of these claims:
Ahmed Patel as a Trustee of the hospital
Alt News has verified the image posted on Twitter by Siddharth Mazumdar with the Trustees of the Sardar Patel hospital and can confirm that Patel had indeed resigned in September 2013. The resignation was accepted by Trust and Charities Commissioner in September 2014. The following documents were again posted on social media claiming to be the documents which confirm Ahmed Patel’s removal from the Board of trustees. Alt News emailed Ahmed Patel’s office and received an official confirmation stating that the documents making the rounds on social media are genuine.
However the biggest confirmation that Patel is no longer a Trustee comes from CM Rupani himself. He had stated at the Press Conference that “Patel was earlier a trustee of the hospital from which he resigned in 2014. However, he continued to run the show at the hospital where President Pranab Mukherjee was invited to inaugurate the premises in 2016”
Those questioning the documents perhaps missed that Rupani had also confirmed that Patel had resigned in 2014. They have since been busy trying to prove that the resignation letter is fake because it is handwritten and without a stamp.
Resignation of the suspected ISIS operative
CM Rupani had raised concerns about the resignation of the suspect in his press conference, “Just two days before being caught, they had resigned or their resignation was procured. This looks suspicious.”
The documents confirm that the suspect was hired in March 2017 and resigned on Oct 4th, 2017. His resignation letter states the notice period from Oct 4th till Oct 24th. The suspect was hired after Patel quit as a Trustee and had resigned from the hospital. When Alt News spoke with Jayesh Patel who is one of the trustees in Sardar Patel hospital, he stated that the accused was employed based on a recommendation letter from his previous employer.
Even though the hospital had issued a statement, the authenticity of this letter was doubted on the basis of the date. “Hospital’s letter dated 29th, while today is 28th”, said many on social media. However, they overlooked the fact that like the letter, the date is also written in Gujarati and is to be read as Oct 27th and not October 29th. Oblivious to this fact, over one thousand people had retweeted this tweet.
Based on the conversation that Alt News had with Jayesh Patel who is a Trustee of Sardar Patel hospital and the email exchanged with Ahmed Patel’s office, it can be confirmed that the above documents that are circulating on social media are genuine.