PEB scam: STF selectively use ‘lack of evidence’ to favour the powerful

  • Ashutosh Shukla, Hindustan Times, Bhopal
  • Updated: Jun 16, 2015 20:19 IST

The Gwalior Special Investigation Team (SIT) has arrested only one of the nine heavy-weight MPPEB scam accused named in the FIR filed by whistleblower Ashish Chaturvedi but has arrested 11 others, nine of them students, whose names had found no mention in the FIR.

According to sources, this appears to be an apt example on how the Special Task Force (STF), which is investigating the multi-crore Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board (PEB) scam, is going soft on the accused close to the high and the mighty, while wasting no time in throwing students and other low-key accused behind the bars.

When a lawyer Sanjay Gupta recently filed a petition in the high court seeking to draw the attention of the court towards the arrest of these low-profile people (under the FIR no 285/14 registered on July 16, 2014), and the fact that no action was taken against persons named in the FIR except Dr Vishal Yadav, who is a student, lawyers appearing for the SIT claimed that there was not enough evidence against them and the inquiry into the case was on and those found involved in the scam would be eventually arrested.

The SIT also presented a closed envelope in the court, sharing some important information about investigation in the case, which was not made public.

But, the Opposition Congress asked why the ‘excuse’ of ‘not enough evidence to necessitate arrest’ was ‘selectively’ being used by the STF.

“It seems to have become a stock excuse for the STF to delay the arrest of the persons close to the ruling dispensation or give them a clean chit eventually. They don’t get evidence against Dr Gulab Singh Kirar because he is seen with the chief minister in public functions. They also don’t get enough evidence against BR Shiravastava, who is the son-in-law of former minister and eminent BJP leader from Gwalior Sheetla Sahai. Sudhir Bhadoriya, who was the examination controller at PEB preceding Pankaj Trivedi has not been arrested because he is close to a top BJP leader of the state but Rahul, Atul, Amit.... have all been arrested because they are students and don’t have the clout to evade arrest,” said leader of Opposition in the state assembly Satyadev Katare.

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