The Police in Panaji and Pune have detained 21 people in connection with the question paper leak of the common entrance exams (CEE) of the Army Recruitment Board which was held on Sunday.
This joint action was taken by Thane Police crime branch which also detected the paper leak. The police and the army sources confirmed that the leaked papers matched with the original papers set by the Army Recruitment Board. The paper was circulated through messages on mobile phones to the beneficiaries
The recruitment was for the post of soldier clerks, soldier tradesman and soldiers (general duty). The educational qualifications ranged from class 8 to class 12 pass out.
The suspected candidates were a Lance Naik with an army depot in Khadki, the director of a private academy for services job aspirants in Phaltan, Satara, Maharashtra. Seven were agents and drivers who helped the key suspects in drawing the beneficiaries. The other nine suspects detained in Nagpur were from Katol tahsil in Nagpur, Maharashtra.
The police also found 210 candidates huddled in the marriage hall in Hudkeshwar locality of Nagpur learning the answers from the question papers given to them by the agents. These candidates were released after questioning. Another three suspects were detained in Goa including one Border Security Force (BSF) jawan.
All these suspects have been handed over to the Thane Police for further action, including arrests.
The team probing into this matter suspected an organised racket to be behind the paper leak involving those who run academic coaching classes for Army job recruitments.
Seventy-nine alleged beneficiaries were allowed to appear for the exam while eight of them were taken to their examination centre by police in Ahmednagar, Maharashtra. The police also brought them back after the exam.
The case is being examined, and the decision about the beneficiaries and the candidates from other centres will be taken by the Army headquarters in Delhi in the coming days.
A police official told The Times of India that the two key suspects in Pune (Army Lance Naik and Phaltan Academy Director) were found dictating questions from the leaked paper to the beneficiaries at a hall in Phursungi, Hadapsar, Maharashtra when the team moved in at around 1.30 am.
The police official further added that the duo had received the leaked paper on a cell phone messaging service from Nagpur.
The police have recovered the cell phone which has photographs of the leaked papers. There is also very high possibility that the army might start an internal inquiry into the case.
The candidates who had to attend the examination had arrived at the Pune Railway Station on Sunday Night. They were then taken to the hall in a private bus where the key suspects briefed them about the questions and the answers.
The Director of the Academy had also verified the CEE ticket of each candidate and collected their original academic documents as collateral for payment after clearing the CEE.
The police handed over the leaked papers to the Army Recruitment (ARO) before the examination.
The Logical Indian would request the police officials to give a stern punishment to the accused which will help deter other people who get paid to leak examination papers.