PSI recruitment scam in Karnataka: Alleged kingpin Divya Hagaragi arrested in Pune

A file photo of BJP leader Divya Hagaragi (left), a leader of Veerashaiva Lingayat Swabhimani Balaga, in Kalaburagi.

A file photo of BJP leader Divya Hagaragi (left), a leader of Veerashaiva Lingayat Swabhimani Balaga, in Kalaburagi. | Photo Credit: ARUN KULKARNI

Alleged kingpin in the Police Sub-Inspector (PSI) recruitment scam Divya Hagaragi, who had been on the run for over a fortnight, was arrested in Pune, Maharashtra early morning on April 29.

Divya Hagaragi runs Gyan Jyoti English Medium School in Kalaburagi in Karnataka where exam answer sheets were allegedly rigged.

Her husband Rajesh Hagaragi was arrested two weeks ago and is in judicial custody. However, she was on the run.

Since she is associated with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Karnataka, the delay in her arrest had triggered allegations from the political opposition about the ruling party trying to protect her.

Home Minister Araga Jnanendra had denied the charge and said she would be arrested soon. On April 29, Mr. Jnanendra told mediapersons that Divya Hagaragi had been arrested in Pune, Maharashtra, and was being brought to Karnataka. “Her arrest shows our commitment to a fair probe. We have given the CID a free hand, and we will not intervene in the probe at any cost,” he said. 

CID sources said the arrest of Jyoti Patil, who works in Shahabad Municipal Corporation, on April 28 led to the arrest of Divya Hagaragi. Jyoti Patil was in touch with one of the persons who was accompanying Divya Hagaragi, sources said.

Divya Hagaragi was arrested along with Archana, a teacher at Gyan Jyoti English Medium School. Three others, who were with them, have been detained, sources said. The identity of the other three persons, whether they were involved in the recruitment scam, is yet to be ascertained, sources said. 

Home Minister Araga Jnanendra said the arrest of Divya Hagaragi will hopefully lead to uncovering of the entire scam and the identity of the others involved in the scam. The investigators are ascertaining whether malpractices had taken place in other exam centres as well.

“We are pained to see meritorious hardworking students falling victim to malpractice. The government is thinking how to protect the interest of such applicants,” he said.

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Printable version | Sep 27, 2022 4:00:01 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/psi-recruitment-scam-in-karnataka-alleged-kingpin-divya-hagaragi-arrested-in-pune/article65366133.ece