The man, who calls himself Raghav Rajan, was detained by the police in Kannur on Friday evening on charges of impersonation after his employer, the State Bank of Travancore, received an anonymous tip-off. After his arrest, Rajan had reportedly confessed to being Bitti Mohanty and was sent to judicial remand; but he now denies being the rape convict.
The Kerala Police has set up three teams to open investigations in Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha, to piece together Mohanty's story over the last six years of living as a fugitive. Sources said they hoped to secure a confirmation in Alwar, Rajasthan, that the man in their custody is indeed Bitti Mohanty.
The first team of the Kerala Police has left for Puttaparthi in Andhra Pradesh to verify the existence of Raghav Rajan. Bitty Mohanty is believed to have lived in Andhra Pradesh for three years before slipping into Kerala.
Bitti Mohanty, whose father is a former Odisha top cop, was back home when he jumped parole in November 2006 after seven months in a Rajasthan jail.
As the Kerala Police team preps to leave for Rajasthan, a police team from Jaipur is in Kannur. Rajasthan Police officials, who had arrested Bitty in the rape case, are meeting the man suspected to be Bitty right now. The Rajasthan Police, whom Bitty Mohanty had given the slip six years ago, too want custody.
The Kerala Police had opposed this saying they wanted to question him first. He faces charges of using fake documents like a matriculation certificate, a passport and a driver's licence in the name of Raghav Rajan to get the job at the bank, where he worked for the last nine months.
The man, who even claims to hold an MBA degree from Kannur University, had previously taught in a school in Kerala. He is believed to have lived in the state for about three years now.
The Kerala Police are also investigating several bank accounts that the man they have detained holds.
Bitti Mohanty had allegedly raped a German tourist in Rajasthan's Alwar district on March 21, 2006, and was convicted by a fast-track court on April 12, 2006. He was sentenced to seven years' imprisonment. He secured parole in November 2006 to meet his ailing mother and subsequently disappeared.
His father BB Mohanty was Director General, Home Guards and Fire Services in Odisha when Bitti Mohanty committed the crime, and was accused of and later arrested for aiding his son's escape. But he was released on bail after remaining in custody for a few days. He was also suspended but was later reinstated. He retired last year.