Gyanchand Verma, former IPS officer and chairman of the Maharashtra Public Service Commission (MPSC) was granted relief by the Bombay high court on Thursday in the alleged exam paper leak case, also known famously as the MPSC scam. Verma, who had been named as a “suspect” in the supplementary chargesheets filed since June 2004, had his name deleted from the case by the high court.
Additional public prosecutor FR Shaikh argued that the investigation in the alleged scam was complete and no material was found against Verma. Even the Maharashtra government had supported Verma’s petition. “Hence there is no need to show him as a ‘suspect’ in the chargesheets,” said Shaikh.
On January 24, justice AM Khanwilkar had allowed Verma’s petition seeking deletion of his name, whereas justice AP Bhangale dismissed Verma’s petition. Following the split verdict, the matter was referred to justice VM Kanade.
On Thursday, justice Kanade agreed with justice Khanwilkar’s opinion. Justice Khanwilkar allowed Verma’s petition citing Article 21 (right to life) of the Constitution of India.
However, justice Khanwilkar added that if additional material was disclosed during further inquiry, then the investigating agency (Anti Corruption Bureau) could proceed against Verma.
In 2001, the MPSC had conducted an examination for the appointment of Mantralaya assistants. There were allegations of malpractices in the examination and it was believed that original answer sheets were replaced with fake ones, computer data was tampered with and interview marks were hiked arbitrarily.
A case was registered by the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) in 2002.
From the sixth supplementary chargesheet filed by the ACB filed in June 2004 till the ninth supplementary chargesheet filed in March 2006, Verma was named a suspect.
Verma, who had joined the IPS in 1965, had filed a petition alleging he was victimised by the then investigating officer (IO) Sudhakar Pujari.