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AIPMT cheating: 358 calls made to exam centres from 72 mobiles

A Haryana police investigation report into the All India Pre-Medical Test 2015-16 mass cheating racket has revealed that 358 calls were made from 72 mobile phones to exam centres across the country, while students wore sophisticated listening devices in specially-made hidden vests to the exam halls.

The report submitted in the Supreme Court on Tuesday showed the extent of the high-tech operations in which over 700 candidates would have illegally benefitted.

Investigation showed that mobile connections on the 72 phones were procured using fake identities.

The report said the Haryana police chief has sent letters to his counterparts in other States for more information on the racket even as parents expressed serious doubts about the fate of genuine candidates in the light of this racket.

Parents claim that an inter-State investigation would further delay declaration of results of the AIPMT, and there is also no guarantee that the police would be able to identify all illegal beneficiaries of the mass cheating. They have been making emotive demands for the apex court to order a re-examination.

But a vacation Bench of Justices A.K. Sikri and U.U. Lalit, rejected this demand, saying that fresh exams at this stage would lead to “tremendous chaos”.

Pace of probe

But the pace of investigations again came into focus during the hearing when the Haryana police claimed they had “caught” red-handed 26 people wearing special vests.

To this, Justice U.U. Lalit asked whether the 26 have been “interrogated”. The police replied in the negative.

This exchange between the Bench and the police authorities saw the parents' lawyer again reiterate their demand for fresh exams, saying it would be “unfair” to make genuine students suffer.

The hearing however, concluded with the Bench asking the Haryana Police to proceed with the investigation and file a further status report in the Supreme Court by June 3.

In an earlier hearing, the police had revealed that answers for 102 out of a total 123 questions were sent to candidates. They had reported that six persons have been arrested so far, but the kingpin was still at large.

The court asked the police to double their efforts and rope in other State governments, telecom and internet service providers to nab the culprits.

It is alleged that a gang operating in different States including Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan is behind this mass rigging of exams.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2021 5:27:35 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/aipmt-mass-cheating-358-calls-made-to-exam-centres-from-72-mobiles/article7248359.ece

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