Guinness Book of World Records is being infested with many fraudsters who claim to be independent observer to witness many record breaking events in India, especially Assam. One such fake observer is Dr. B K Chandrasekhar Tiwari who has shattered many record breakers dream in the name of Guinness record. Following this fake observer Chandrasekhar Tiwari for a long time through in-depth investigation, Times of Assam is finally ready to expose this creep through a series of news episodes.
This all started when Pankaj Jyoti Borah (19yrs old), a student of Kendriya Vidayalaya in Jorhat, decided to run the fastest barefoot 100 Km in 10 hrs to break the previous record of an US national of Indian origin M. Sridhar Reddy to enter his name in the Guinness World Records. Sridhar Reddy achieved the Guinness Records fastest 100 Km run barefoot, clocking 10 hrs 47 Mins 40 sec on June 27, 2013 Accordingly, Pankaj started physical preparation along with the documentation process of applying with Guinness authorities for a claim ID to undertake the fastest run. Correspondences between Guinness and Pankaj were proceeding smoothly and nevertheless the district administration of Jorhat, especially the Superintendent of Police, Dr. Sanjukta Parashar (IPS) rendered all possible help to make Pankaj’s run a great success. It would be worthwhile to mention here that Sanjukta Parashar had earlier shot Abhijit Baruah, the Assam police constable to popularity, when Abhijit entered the Guinness Records Title in the category, “Greatest distance run barefoot in 24 hrs is 156.2 Km between 30-31 January 2012”.
Everything was scheduled as plan with media reporting in advance about Pankaj’s attempted fete and appealing the public to support the Assamese lad while mentioning the presence of Guinness Indian observer Dr. B K Chandrasekhar Tiwari to measure each passing second and declare Pankaj Guinness Record Holder in the event of a successful run. The day that was 6’Th November, 2013, Pankaj started his run at 6:13 AM from Bongalpukhuri to Na-Ali, Dhekiajuli and kept running the whole day until 5:10 PM supported by Assam Police Traffic Branch when it was appearing that Pankaj would make it to the Guinness and upon completion of the final lap and reaching the culminating point at Bongalpukhuri, to the saddest moment of all public present did Guinness Indian Observer, Dr. Tiwari informed Pankaj about his failed attempt to enter the Guinness by a mere 5 minutes and reiterated that he just had a talk with the Director of Asia Book of Records and that an urgent claim ID would be allotted if Pankaj runs an additional 57 Km in another 10 Hours to break Abhijit Baruah’s 156.2 Km World Record.
Times of Assam correspondent tried repeatedly to contact B K Chandrasekhar Tiwari just after the announcement of Pankaj’s so called failed Guinness attempt but B K Chandrasekhar Tiwari within no time vanished in thin air. The phone number collected from some media persons helped the correspondent to contact at his number +91999XXX8X6X but without response. One attempt to connect resulted in some 11 secs chat that was far from understanding before disconnection.
After following up with Guinness and the corresponding emails exchanged with Guinness Indian observer Nikhil Shukla, the correspondent asked Guinness Record holder Abhijit Baruah to contact the observer to which Chandrasekhar told Abhijit,” Who says I am not Guinness observer. I am their independent observer”. Mentionable that, many of Indian newspapers and electronic media already cited B K Chandrasekhar Tiwari as Guinness World Record’s Indian observer. Those citation can be found searching Google for Tiwari’s complete name. One can find that most of the Indian media cited him as Guinness’ Indian observer.
Now the question arises why would the Guinness Indian observer talk of Asia Book of Records? Does Tiwari hold dual portfolio of both Guinness and Asia Book of records or additionally any other records book like the India Book of records? This is when Times of Assam decided to investigate the matter. After a few emails corresponded with Guinness office at London it was learnt that Nikhil Shukla is the actual/real and one and only officially appointed Guinness World Records Indian observer empowered to witness and verify Guinness attempts/records. It was also instructed to contact Nikhil Shukla for any further queries. It was only when Nikhil Shukla responded to Times of Assam’s email that the Pandora box open with startling facts out of which the most shocking revelation was about the till now Guinness observer Dr. B K Chandrasekhar Tiwari. In the email, Nikhil wrote, “We would like clarify that Guinness World Records is not associated with Mr. Chandrasekhar Tiwari in any possible way and he does not represent Guinness World Records nor is he permitted to act on behalf.”
Further Nikhil insisted, “For any record related matters or queries you can contact me or our head office in London at email@example.com”.
On further investigations it was imminent that the fastest 100 Kilometer barefoot run is enlisted in the name of Peter Wayne Botha (New Zealand) in 8 hour 49 minutes 42 sec achieved at the 16th Annual Sri Chinmoy 24 Hour race in Auckland, New Zealand, on 5th October 2013. Peter had broken M. Sridhar’s Guinness record set in the earlier part of 2013.
So the analogue drawn is that even if Pankaj Borah would have completed the record in some 10 hrs 46 minutes on 6th Nov, 2013, his Guinness entry would have remained a dream in view of the current record of Peter Botha’s 8 hr 49 minutes record set on 5th Oct, 2013. Now the big question is for which record was Pankaj running, Guinness or some other? If Pankaj was provided a claim ID by Guinness then how Chandrasekhar Tiwari didn’t know about the current record status of Peter Wayne Botha. As a Guinness man Tiwari should have had prior knowledge of any record achieved/entered/broken. Pankaj who hails from a poor family definitely had the zeal to run and cover why only 100 Km but could have definitely covered a few kilometers more but what appears was that he was misguided. His dreams shattered today besides the physical torture to his barefooted legs that run 12 minutes short of 11 continuous hours in the hope of breaking a record and entering his name as the fastest barefoot runner in the world.
Many questions will have to be answered and Times of Assam would publish more on this fraud business of creating Guinness records and the true identity of persons like Dr. B K Chandrasekhar Tiwari and the persons associated with him and names of those who bring Tiwari to Assam in the name of witnessing Guinness events.
Stay Tuned readers.
Aamir Hazarika served as Staff Reporter in Times of Assam. Hazarika is an investigative Journalist for more than a decade.