As CBI targets small fish, politicians, top officials get away

The nexus between politicians and government machinery has also been a major reason that investigation in Madhya Pradesh’s Vyapam scam was done at many levels but influential people were not brought to book.

Even though the name of Vyapam has been changed to Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board (MPPEB) and the exercise of giving new names is going on, but the discussions about the scam, that erupted a decade ago, are refusing to die down.

Vyapam conducts the entrance examination for admission to various vocational educational institutions of the state, as well as the examination for recruitment of class III and IV employees. It conducts the examination for admission to more than a dozen courses.

These are such examinations which decide how to become a doctor, a teacher, a lawyer, who will get a chance in police, nurse and clerical work in the state.

The process of admission in various educational institutions of the state has been going on for years, but its big disclosure came in 2013, when a gang was busted in Indore and its leader was identified as Jagdish Sagar. It was also said that Sagar had close relations with the leaders of all political parties. In place of the real students, fake students were made to sit for the examination and lakhs of rupees were provided to the gang leader, Vyapam officials and politicians, apart from the fake examinee. This went on for years.

First the STF, then the SIT and then the country’s largest investigative agency, the CBI, took the command of the investigation of this scam. As a result, from political leaders to bureaucrats and the exam-conductors were put behind the bars.

The biggest name from political fratrenity came in form of former minister Laxmikant Sharma, while Sudhir Sharma, who had a strong hold in the corridors of power, also came under fire. Not only this, the names of former governor’s son Shailesh Yadav and OSD Dhananjay Yadav also made headlines.

Not only this, former Vyapam controller Pankaj Trivedi, computer analyst Nitin Mohindra were also arrested. Apart from this, IPS level officers also came under the fire. The heat of this scam even reached the Chief Minister’s residence.

Congress’ Vice President of Media Department Abbas Hafeez alleged “BJP’s character has been to weaken constitutional institutions. This is the reason when Vyapam scam was unearthed, Congress had demanded a CBI inquiry, but this investigation was not handed over to the CBI. When the BJP coalition government came at the Centre, the investigation was handed over to the CBI and what happened is not hidden from anyone.”

“Investigating agencies have been interested in catching only small fish, big fish have always been spared. The Vyapam scam unearthed, but on which minister action was taken, it is in front of everyone,” he added.

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