Sting exposes answer sheet scam in Bangalore University

All it takes is Rs. 10,000 to make changes in your answer scripts long after the exams are over. After question paper leaks, it is now a scam of leaking answer scripts. In a shocking revelation, members of the National Students' Union of India (NSUI) exposed a racket in Bangalore University (BU), where a network was making available OMR answer sheets of last month's semester exams to students who shelled out Rs. 10,000. The answer scripts pertain to the first, third and fifth semester exams.

NSUI members, who spoke to the press after submitting a memorandum to BU Chancellor and Governor H.R. Bhardwaj, said they pulled off the sting operation after being tipped off about the racket by other students. Mahesh Ravanikar, NSUI State president, said: “We did the sting on October 19, but the students involved were too scared to appear before the media. That's why there was a delay.”

How it was done

According to M.P. Keerthiraj, a commerce student of SSMRV College, Jayanagar, who conducted the sting after attempting the Accounts paper he was yet to pass, he said: “We heard the rumours and got hold of Harish, a staff member of a college affiliated to BU, who was the mediator. We paid a Rs. 5,000 advance in the morning, and he got us the paper by evening. He met us at about 10 p.m., and took us to a house where we could make changes. We then had to pay the remaining Rs. 5,000.” Apparently, if students wanted the answer key, they had to pay Rs. 200 more, and they could copy the answers from there.

The sting operation footage shows the students seated in what appears to be a house, and showing the OMR sheets they procured to the hidden mobile phone camera.

Inside help

Mr. Ravanikar alleged that procuring sealed answer scripts that too of a specific register number from the lakhs of answer sheets in BU, could not have been carried out without inside help. “The Governor has promised to step in if an enquiry is not ordered. We will hold a protest on Saturday.”

Vice-Chancellor N. Prabhu Dev, who heard the news only through the media, said the tout had already been arrested. A committee will hold a parallel inquiry. “We are firm about curbing such malpractices. Inside help is a possibility as there are always black sheep,” he added.