Police blew the lid off a syndicate in the Capital that helped candidates get admission into prestigious Delhi University (DU) colleges with forged documents and even created fake websites of several state education boards, officials said on Thursday.
The city’s crime branch laid a trap and arrested four men, including a student of south Delhi’s Aurobindo College, in a case similar to the multi-layered Vyapam test-rigging scam of Madhya Pradesh.
A senior police officer said those arrested helped over 25 candidates this year get into 10 DU institutes, including Hindu College, Kirorimal College and Sri Aurobindo College (evening), charging between Rs 3 lakh and Rs 7 lakh from clients.
The nearly century-old university attracts tens of thousands of aspirants from across the country every year, but limited seats and the sky-high scores required in school-leaving examinations for admission mean a majority of them go back disappointed.
Joint commissioner of police (crime branch) Ravindra Yadav said an officer received the tip-off that three members of the gang were coming to the Malviya Nagar main market in a Maruti Suzuki Ertiga.
“A trap was laid by the raiding party led by assistant commissioner KPS Malhotra. Three suspects, Sunil Panwar, Juber and Ranchit Khurana, were arrested," said Yadav. “A large number of forged documents and stamps of different schools and education boards were found.”
Panwar turned out to be the gang leader who, along with Juber, would procure details of students who could not get admission in a course or college of their choice at Delhi University because of poor scores in the Class 12 board exams.
“They gave the details of the candidates to Ranchit, who accessed forged documents from a man named Praveen Jha. He was arrested in a raid," said additional commissioner of police Alok Kumar. “Dozens of bogus degrees, mark sheets, caste certificates and other documents were retrieved from Jha’s office. Computers, printers and stamps of different schools and education boards were also found.”
DCP Bhisham Singh said the gang forged academic documents of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar education boards and also set up fake websites of these agencies to escape detection.
"The racketeers would upload details of the bogus certificates and mark sheets on these fake websites for online verification by colleges,” said Singh. “They had also cooked up fake degrees of various universities for clients seeking jobs in the private sector.