Ex-DIG and BJP leader linked to exam scam
The investigation into the question paper leak that led to the cancellation of the recruitment examination for 597 posts of Assam police sub-inspectors on Sunday has revealed that around 50 candidates were allegedly “coached” about the various aspects of the exam at a lodge here on Saturday.
Interrogation of those arrested from the lodge and elsewhere in the city and recoveries made from the lodge suggested that the candidates were coached into writing the paper properly on Sunday, sources said.
“There are two aspects to the case now — one is the paper leak and the other is the recruitment racket. The probe is only widening with each passing day. But we are in the right direction,” a source said.
Ten people have been arrested since Wednesday in connection with the paper leak, of whom one has been apprehended by the CID and nine by the crime branch of city police. Seven of the accused were arrested on Thursday.
Apart from the coaching angle which has been unearthed, what is turning heads are two names doing the rounds in connection with the case — retired deputy inspector-general P.K. Dutta and a ruling BJP leader Diban Deka. Both are said to be absconding after their names started doing the rounds.
Police have raided their residences in the city and elsewhere. The investigating team has also searched several hotels and properties purportedly linked to Dutta in Dibrugarh and Guwahati.
Deka, who contested the 2011 Assembly polls on a BJP ticket and was a former employee of the now defunct Saradha group involved in the multi-crore deposit collection scam, is presently holed up outside the state, according to a Facebook post, because he feared for his life since several influential people, including police officials, were involved in the paper leak case.
Deka, who was quizzed in connection with the case, disappeared soon after, sources said. Deka has in his post admitted to being associated with the private company that was tasked to conduct the examination. In fact, he claimed he had informed the State Level Police Recruitment Board (SLPRB) that conducted the examination about the paper leak.
Deka said he has been with the BJP for 24 years and would not do anything to bring the party or the BJP-led government into disrepute while seeking protection for his family from chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal, who has said vested forces had conspired to derail the recruitment drive but none will be spared.
Assam Congress chief Ripun Bora, attacking the state government for its “failure” to hold the examination, saying they saw an “RSS plot” to recruit its members.
Seeking a judicial probe, Bora said a thorough probe should be initiated into reports that about 50 candidates writing the exam in a city lodge on Saturday.
“These candidates should also be arrested. Such examinations, we are told, were held in several districts to help the RSS–backed candidates. We want a thorough, independent judicial probe. How can police probe against its own people?” Bora asked.
BJP chief spokesperson Rupam Goswami said Sonowal and state unit president Ranjeet Kumar Dass have clearly stated those involved in the case will be taken to task and has directed the police to fast-track the probe and also hold the re-examination within a month.
“We are very clear. Nobody will be spared,” Goswami said.