The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Friday directed the Chandigarh police to register an FIR in connection with the alleged leak of Haryana Judicial Service Examination while expressly stating that the probe be carried out by the Chandigarh police only since the exam was conducted in that capital.
A bench of Justice Rajesh Bindal, Justice Rajan Gupta and Justice GS Sandhawalia also directed the Public Prosecutor, UT Chandigarh, to submit a list of senior officers who can be the members of the Special Investigating Team to probe the leakage.
The order of FIR is in consonance with the finding of the Recruitment/ Promotion/ Court Creation Committee which had recommended that, "an FIR be lodged against Ms. Sunita, Ms. Sushila and Dr. Balwinder Sharma, Registrar (Recruitment) to further probe the act of leakage of question paper of HCS (JB) Preliminary Examination 2017".
"It is made clear that with reference to the alleged leakage of question paper in question, an investigation shall be made by the Chandigarh Police only," the court ordered.
The court also placed under suspension Dr. Balwinder Sharma, Registrar (Recruitment).
"Keeping in view the seriousness of the matter and report of the Registrar (Vigilance), prima facie, pointing out involvement of Dr. Balwinder Kumar Sharma, Registrar (Recruitment), and further recommendations made by the Committee for deeper probe and disciplinary action against him, we recommend that the officer be placed under suspension with immediate effect pending disciplinary proceedings, fixing his head quarter at any place other than Chandigarh," it said.
The Director General of Police, UT Chandigarh, has been directed to appear in person in the court on September 18. The UT has also been impleaded as a party.
During the hearing, Kanwaljit Singh, senior counsel appearing for the high court, submitted that the high court does not have any objection in case the matter is got investigated from an independent agency.
He proposed constituting a Special Investigation Team.
He further submitted that the examination having beenconducted in Chandigarh and even in the complaint filed by Manoj, it is claimed that some conversation or transaction had taken place at Sector-17 in Chandigarh, it would be appropriate if the FIR is registered in Chandigarh.
It is to be noted that the Recruitment/ Promotion/Court Creation Committee made the following recommendations:-
“(a) In view of the prima facie finding that at least two candidates namely Ms. Sunita and Sushila had the question papers and therefore the possibility that other candidates may have also had access to the question paper cannot be ruled out; in such circumstances, purity of the examination having been lost, the Committee recommends that the HCS (JB) Preliminary Examination 2017 held on 16.7.2017 be scrapped.
(b) Keeping in view the finding that Dr. Balwinder Sharma, Registrar (Recruitment), unequivocally stated that he had no prior acquaintance with Ms. Sunita (the topper in general category), while the call details given by the service provider reveal that there were a total of 760 calls and SMSs exchanged between Dr. Balwinder Sharma and Ms. Sunita during the last one year, indicate that the matter requires a deeper probe. Therefore, the Committee recommends that regular enquiry be initiated against Dr. Balwinder Sharma, Registrar (Recruitment),on the basis of preliminary enquiry.
(c) Dr. Balwinder Sharma, Registrar (Recruitment), be transferred forthwith from this post pending further action.