Five medical students in Gwalior accused of rigging their entrance exam but later cleared by a state level probe have written to President Pranab Mukherjee begging him to restore dignity in their lives, or allow them to commit suicide.
Manish Sharma, Raghvendra Singh, Pankaj Bansal, Amit Chadha and Vikas Gupta -- admitted to the MBBS course at Gajra Raja Medical College in 2010 -- have alleged that though the Special Investigation Team (SIT) had cleared them of all accusations, yet they were hounded by the college authorities. The SIT was investigating the Vyapam scam before it was handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) .
In 2013, these students were accused of passing the Pre Medical Test (PMT) through fraudulent means after it was found that their photos or signatures in the admit card failed to match with the college identity card.
The students are among 3000-odd people accused of involvement in the multi-crore rupees scam involving the state’s medical education system. The investigation into the scandal has been hit by a series of mysterious deaths of important accused, whistleblowers and witnesses.
Their threat to commit suicide out of desperation is a stark reminder of the tragic case of Ramendra Singh, a graduate from the same college who took his own life earlier this year after being repeatedly harassed of being a part of the Vyapam scam, even though he was given a clean chit by the SIT.
In an emotional letter written to the President the students have described how they are still being treated as 'frauds' in their college.
"Despite getting clean chit from SIT, we are still facing stigma of an 'accused' in the Vyapam scam. We have nothing to do with Vyapam scam but the college administration shortlisted our names among those who had used impersonator in PMT in a superficial investigation. On the basis of this 'baseless' investigation, which doesn't include any forensic expert's comments, we were suspended from the college. SIT didn't find any evidence against us and gave us clean chit. We were reinstated in the college but stigma of being a fraud continues to haunt us," Manish Sharma said.
Pankaj Bansal said by accusing them the college's investigation team has ruined their career prospects.
"The college's flimsy investigation has spoiled our career. We are moving pillar to post for justice. We have approached collector to chief minister to get a clean chit so that we could live a life of dignity, we are treated with same respect as other students of the college but no one listens to our grievances. That's why we finally decided to write a letter to President seeking permission for euthanasia," he said.
"In the college, students and teachers treat us as frauds," said Raghvendra Singh adding that they are failed intentionally in exams and also asked to sit separately while taking any test.