In a major breakthrough, Punjab vigilance bureau (VB) has arrested three people, including the mastermind, who were behind various cases of paper leak in government recruitments in Punjab in 2015.
The three accused – Shiv Bahadur Singh of Varanasi, Shailesh Kumar of Azamgarh and Sanjay Srivastva alias Mithilesh Pandey alias Guruji of Lucknow — were taken into custody by the vigilance team.
While Shiv Bahadur has been arrested from Telengana, Shailesh and Guruji were arrested from Lucknow after a tip-off given by Shiv during his interrogation.
“Shiv Bhadur appears to be the kingpin of the scam as he used to cultivate the lower-rank employes at different printing presses selected for printing of papers. These men used to leak question paper to Shiv. Shailesh and Guruji were his accompanlices, who used to sell the paper to the aspirants through their network,” said vigilance bureau director G Nageshwra Rao, while addressing a press conference here on Wednesday.
“The trio has a track record of leaking question papers in different states. The accused are also wanted in JBT and ETT teacher recruitment scams in Chandigarh. Guruji was jailed in Uttar Pradesh (UP) too for leaking railway recruitment papers,” said the vigilance director.
The investigations have revealed that Shiv Bahadur had links with Ranvir Singh Rawat, a lower-rank employee in Delhi printing press, who leaked the question paper for sub-divisonal officers (SDOs) for Rs 12 lakh.
These papers were further sold to the candidates by Shiv Bahadur through Guruji and the former bought a Rs 15-crore house in Delhi with the money made in the scam, the investigation has revealed.
The Bureau has already arrested Shiv Bahadur’s driver Anup Singh, but his role in the scam is not clear yet.
While Guruji has been remanded into five-day vigilance custody by a SAS Nagar court, the other two accused have been sent to judicial custody.
In November 2015, the vigilance bureau had busted a recruitment scam for the posts of SDOs and junior engineers conducted by the Punjab government for filling several posts in local civic bodies, Punjab State Civil Supplies Corporation (PUNSUP), Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority and the irrigation department.
It was found that the examination paper for SDOs was leaked before the exam. The exam was held for 682 posts in different areas, including assistant corporation engineer, assistant MC engineer and sub-divisional engineer.
During investigations, it had come out that some of the candidates appearing in these exams were shown all the question papers in Lucknow and Najafgarh, Delhi.
The vigilance bureau, Mohali, had in June last year arrested two brothers who had access to question papers in advance for the tests conducted for government jobs in different departments.
More than 70 arrests have been made in the recruitment scam so far, said the vigilance director.