The Supreme Court on Monday asked Madhya Pradesh State Public Service Commission (MPPSC) and MP Special Task Force (STF) to submit status reports of their investigation into the MPPSC–2012 examination paper leak case in two weeks.
The apex court directive comes after a petitioner approached it challenging the Madhya Pradesh high court’s order that permitted the MPPSC to go forward with interview process of 1,200 candidates on grounds that it was not a case of mass cheating and primarily only 11 people have been found guilty and 10 out of them were arrested by STF.
Around 1,200 candidates qualified for interview round after they cleared the 2012-MPPSC prelims held in 2013. The MPPSC was to conduct interviews from July 30, 2014 but the process was halted after a gang involved in paper leak cases was busted in the first week of July.
From July 1, the MPPSC began to interview candidates for filling 400 posts following the high court order.
The state STF has submitted before the high court that they have progressed to a considerable extent in the case, but the investigation is still on as four accused, including one candidate, are still absconding.
The MPPSC, in its reply before the high court, said the tainted candidates and the non-tainted candidates have been segregated, therefore in the light of apex court ruling in Joginder Pal and others (supra), the high court directed the commission to proceed with the interview process.
The high court order was challenged before the apex court on the ground that the segregation of beneficiaries of the paper leak and innocent candidates is not possible, when some accused are still absconding and case is still under investigation.
A Special Leave Petition was moved by Mukesh Rane before the Supreme Court.
Petitioner’s counsel Abhimanue Shrestha said, “The apex court has asked the state STF and MPPSC to submit status report of the ongoing investigation in MPPSC 2012 paper leak case.” The matter is listed again after two weeks.
On July 16, the Madhya Pradesh high court issued notice to the MPPSC and the general administration department on a public interest litigation seeking cancellation of MPPSC-2012 exam.