India’s ‘most wanted’ who hid in plain sight for 30 years and acted in 28 films

A man featured on the list of "most wanted criminals" in an Indian state hid in plain sight for 30 years, acting in whopping 28 films in that period.

Om Prakash – also known as Pasha – was wanted by police in the northern Indian state of Haryana for three decades on suspicion of murder and robbery before being found.

The former Indian army employee, 65, hid in the neighbouring state of Uttar Pradesh where he assumed a brand-new life with official documents before marrying a local woman and raising three children together, reports the BBC.

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His luck game to a grinding halt this week, however, when officers arrested the frail man from his slum home in Ghaziabad city.

Before this though he managed to great deal done – he acted in 28 low-budget films and drove a touring truck through villages as part of a religious singing group.

Pasha is now in custody and hasn't responded to the accusations against him, but Sub-Inspector Vivek Kumar of Haryana's Special Task Force (STF) – part of the team who arrested him – told the BBC that he blamed an alleged accomplice for the 1992 murder he is accused of.

A few days after Pasha's arrest hit the headlines, the BBC went in search of his family to hear their side of the story – taking the reporter three-and-a-half hours to track them down in the Harbans Nagar slum.

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They discovered Rajkumari, his wife of 25 years, and two of his three children – a 21-year-old son and 14-year-old daughter.

His wife told the BBC the family was still in shock, and had "no idea" and about "alleged criminal past" – still trying to wrap their heads around the situation.

The family then went on to accuse Pasha of betrayal. Rajkumari said: "I married him in 1997, not knowing that he was already married and had a family in Haryana."

Pasha is said to have had a number of crimes to his name before the alleged robbery and murder in 1992 – in which he and another man are believed to have stabbed a bicycle user when they failed in a robbery attempt.

The second man was reported to have been caught and spent "seven-eight years in jail" before he was released on bail.

Pasha soon vanished, however, it is thought he stayed in temples in the southern states of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh for the first year to avoid being caught – before returning to northern India where he found work driving trucks.

He married in 1997 and from 2007, featured in local Hindi-language films.


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