The Madhya Pradesh government has claimed in the Delhi high court that the whistleblower of the Professional Examination Board (PEB) scam, now under police protection, is "playing into the hands of people with political affiliation".
Justice Siddharth Mridul was also informed by Madhya Pradesh director general of police that there is "no threat to life of the petitioner (whistleblower)" nor do they have "objection to Delhi Police providing security to him".
The Madhya Pradesh government and state police have submitted that the petitioner by "playing into the hands of persons with political affiliation is attempting to protect himself from conviction in criminal cases registered against him through this petition which has been styled as writ petition seeking enforcement of right of petitioner guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution of India".
"There is no threat to life of the petitioner. He at no stage ever made any complaint in this regard... It is submitted that the respondents (Madhya Pradesh government and the state police) have no objection to Delhi police providing security to the petitioner," a joint affidavit filed by Madhya Pradesh government and state police has said.
The affidavit was filed after the high court on February 20 issued notices to Delhi Police, Madhya Pradesh government, state police and the Special Task Force (STF) probing the case seeking their replies on the plea filed by the whistleblower.
The court had also directed Delhi Police to give adequate security to the petitioner-whistleblower, a computer expert (digital forensic engineer) by profession, who has alleged that while working for STF during the probe into the PEB scam, he became privy to certain information, which according to him, is damaging to highly-placed individuals within the government and administration in Madhya Pradesh.
Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the petitioner, had said that he was even arrested in a "false" case lodged by Madhya Pradesh Police and later granted bail in August 2014.
The state government in its reply has also said that the petitioner, who claims to be a computer expert, has a criminal background.
It has also said "the petition is not maintainable as this court does not have the territorial jurisdiction to issue any direction to the answering respondents in respect of criminal cases registered against the petitioner within the territory of Madhya Pradesh".
PEB scam was an admission and recruitment scam allegedly involving politicians, senior officials and businessmen, the plea has said.
Complaints of irregularities and crooked deals in the pre-medical test (PMT) surfaced in 2009 but in the year 2013, a major scam was unearthed which allegedly involved several officials and politicians from the state ruling party.
The petitioner has alleged that after he was released on bail, Madhya Pradesh Police picked him up and wanted to know as to whether STF has any clue about the state chief minister's alleged involvement in the scam as "the petitioner was assisting the STF in PEB scam investigation".
"Thereafter on assurance of the petitioner that he would not divulge any information to anyone, the Bhopal police allowed him to go from their illegal detention," the plea has said.
The petitioner has further alleged that with help from another person, he had contacted Congress leader Digvijaya Singh and told him about the threat.
In February, he had to shift to Delhi as he was finding it hard to work or stay in Indore as a "false" case was registered against him, his plea said. Sibal had earlier told the court that the documents related to the case, which his client is possessing, shall be filed before the Registrar General of Delhi high court for safety reasons.
He had also said that the petitioner had received a call on the night of February 18 from a senior official of Madhya Pradesh police asking about his current whereabouts.