HP constable recruitment paper leak: From history sheeters to I-T officer, list of accused runs long

Published on Jun 28, 2022 03:04 AM IST

Director general of police Sanjay Kundu said the 171 persons arrested include 116 candidates, fathers of nine candidates, and 46 agents, of which 21 were from the hill state, while 25 were from other states

From history sheeters to an engineer, cricket organiser, transporter, railway clerk, and income tax officer around 171 people from different walks of life have been arrested in the Himachal Pradesh constable recruitment case so far. (Deepak Sansta / HT)
From history sheeters to an engineer, cricket organiser, transporter, railway clerk, and income tax officer around 171 people from different walks of life have been arrested in the Himachal Pradesh constable recruitment case so far. (Deepak Sansta / HT)
By, Shimla

From history sheeters to an engineer, cricket organiser, transporter, railway clerk, and income tax officer around 171 people from different walks of life have been arrested in the Himachal Pradesh constable recruitment case so far, officials said on Monday.

Director general of police Sanjay Kundu said the 171 persons arrested include 116 candidates, fathers of nine candidates, and 46 agents, of which 21 were from the hill state, while 25 were from other states. The accused were arrested under Sections 420 (cheating), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence or proving false information) and 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.

“Deputy inspector general of police (DIG, central range) Madhusudhan Sharma, the head of the five-member special investigation team (SIT) will file a chargesheet in the case within this week,” he said.

One of biggest scams in country: Kundu

Calling it one of the biggest scams in the country, Kundu said, “The interstate gangs involved in the paper leak had its network spread across 10 states, including Punjab, Uttarakhand, West Bengal, Bihar, UP, Haryana, Delhi, and Rajasthan. As per call records, three interstate from Bihar, UP and Haryana were working in tandem to sell solved question papers through a vast network of agents.”

“Some of the persons involved in the paper leak were also responsible for leaking of papers for other recruitment exams held in other states, including Rajasthan and Jammu & Kashmir,” he said, adding that he had recommended central intelligence and security agencies that a high-security printing press on the lines of one that prints currency notes be set up in the country for printing recruitment papers.

On the modus operandi, the DGP said that some employees of printing presses were the members of the paper-leak gangs. “Soon after getting the papers, these employees would contact their associates in other states, who would buy the names and other details of the candidates from coaching centres.They would then contact the candidates to sell them papers using their network spread across states,” he said.

Complicity of police officers not established so far

The DIG said that efforts were on to arrest around 10 other people identified as accused in the case. “The number may go up as the investigation progresses,” he said. Asked about the complicity of police in the leaks, Sudan said the involvement of no police officer had been found so far.

In a detailed presentation, Sharma said one of the candidate could not clear the exam despite procuring the paper in advance, while one of the accused persons ran a local cricket team.

Sleuths also found the involvement of Rajasthan-cadre income -tax officer and his wife.”The accused officer is absconding while his wife is in the advanced stage of her pregnancy and could not be arrested.”

One Rajeev Yadav, a section engineer in the Railways, and a transporter has also been arrested in the case.

The CM had on May 17 decided to hand over the case to CBI, but the probe agency is yet to take over the investigation. Around 75,000 candidates had appeared in the written exam held on March 27, of which 25,000 had passed.

The state government had cancelled the exam after the paper leak was confirmed. The exam has been rescheduled for July 3.

Recovery record

So far, the cops have recovered 10,89,760 from agents, 6,000 in Nepalese currency, 185 mobile phones, five laptops, one DVR, 10 hard discs, three pen drives, three memory cards, three dongles, eight certificates, and two pass books.Six cars have been impounded and 18 pages of transaction records with Real Time Gross Settlement have been procured.

(With agency inputs)

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Gaurav Bisht heads Hindustan Times’ Himachal bureau. He covers politics in the hill state and other issues concerning the masses.

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