A vacation Bench of the Supreme Court comprising of Justice A.K. Sikri and Justice U.U. Lalit has categorized re-conducting of All India Pre-Medical Test examination as a measure of “last resort”. The examinations saw large scale irregularities like leakage of answer keys.
Additional Solicitor General Maninder Singh drew the attention of the Court to the fact that six lakh students had taken the examination. The Bench hence observed, “Why should six lakh people be asked to take up the examination all over again and we should try to find out the number of beneficiaries.”
Expressing its disappointment with respect to the irregularities, the Court observed, “You (CBSE) will have to put jammers and everything in place. You just imagine the level of frustration among the students.”
In order to separate the wheat from the chaff, the Bench urged the Special Investigation Team of Haryana Police to trace the actual number of beneficiaries from the alleged irregularities.
The law enforcement agencies of other States and mobile service providing companies were also directed to assist the Haryana Police.
Haryana Police also filed a Status report laying details of the progress so far. It informed the Court that six people have been arrested so far in relation to the case.
The Court was informed that on May 3, when the tests were being conducted, the Police received information that some doctors were leaking question papers. Later, answer keys of 123 questions were transmitted through 75 mobile phones in different states, he said, adding that calls were made to states like Bihar, Jharkhand, Rajasthan and Haryana.
The SIM cards through which these calls were made were purchased especially for this purpose and were destroyed soon after the examination finished. The officer informed the Court that around 700 candidates were supplied answers “electronically in examination halls across the country”.
The Court therefore wanted to bring in the aid of mobile service providers to help the police in locating the number of beneficiaries.
The matter has now been posted for May 26.
Earlier, the Court had issued notices to the Centre, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), Medical Council of India and Haryana.
The petitions, filed by Tanya Sarwal, through Advocate Prashant Bhushan, allege large scale irregularities in the examination. It says that the investigation carried out by the Special Investigation Team of Haryana into alleged leak of answer keys has revealed that the accused gang operated in different states including Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. It claims that at least 90 leaked answer keys were transmitted to candidates in consideration of Rs 15-20 lakh.
“There were specially designed jackets and vests purchased from Delhi which contained SIM cards and Bluetooth ear pieces” and according to police the “modus operandi of the gang resembles the one adopted in the alleged leaking of the AIIMS PG entrance exam paper in 2012″.
It therefore prays, “Issue appropriate writ directing the respondent no 1 (CBSE) to forthwith re-conduct the AIPMT examination 2015-16 in order to meet time schedule as provided in the regulations on Graduate Medical Education, framed by the MCI under the Indian Medical Council Act.” Read the LiveLaw story here.