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HindustanTimes Thu,27 Nov 2014
Stranger than fiction
Atisha Jain, Hindustan Times
August 29, 2014
First Published: 20:13 IST(30/8/2014)
Last Updated: 20:23 IST(30/8/2014)

Emraan Hashmi’s Raja Natwarlal is apparently fiction, which is sad because real con men are super. Here’s a run through-
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Frank W Abagnale Jr
Portrayed in Catch Me If You Can (2002)

Impersonated a pilot, a doctor and a prosecutor. Cashed forged cheques worth $2.5 million – before he turned 21. He went on to work with the FBI.
Filmi line: “An honest man has nothing to fear and I am trying not to be afraid of anything.”


Conmen who carried out a heist on 19 March 1987
Portrayed in Special 26 (2013)

A group of 26 people posing as tax officials raided a jewellery store in Opera House, Mumbai. They stole gold ornaments and stashed the booty in briefcases.
Filmi line:
“Logon ke pairon mein chakkar hota hai ... mere dimaag mein hai.”


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Frederic Bourdin
Inspiration for Imposter (2012), a documentary

Assumed about 500 false identities. Posed as a teenager and convinced his parents he was their missing son!
Filmi line: “A new identity was a real passport, an American passport.”


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Mithilesh Kumar Srivastava
The reported inspiration for Mr Natwarlal (1979) 

Dream of owning the Taj Mahal? Natwarlal sold it – several times. He escaped prison eight times. And remained elusive even in death: he died twice but could still be alive.
Filmi line: “Main apne dushman se kiye huye vaade ko bhi poora karta hoon.”


From HT Brunch, August 31
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