The blood tinted Vyapam scam that led to mysterious deaths of more than 40 people including journalists got another shock after the apex court sustained the cancellation of 634 candidates for malpractices in the entrance examination conducted by Vyapam in Madhya Pradesh.
The apex court bench, headed by Chief Justice of India JS Khehar, dismissed all the petitions filed by students.
The lawyer of students, Pragati, who was representing the students, told, “It’s a big setback for the students.”
In 2013, soon after the scam broke, the Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board (MPPEB) also called as Vyapam carried out an internal investigation and identified 634 students, who they felt had used unfair means like copying to get admission in the MBBS course.
After investigating the matter, the officials at the MPPEB identified such aspirants who had given the Pre-Medical Test from 2008 to 2013 and had copied answers from other candidates sitting around them.
“We found a pattern and identified such cases where wrong answers were in common,” said an official at the MPPEB who was part of the investigation.
A FIR was registered in 2015, after which Supreme Court directed the CBI to look into the case. The CBI has found some 300 impersonators who appeared on the behalf of applicants.
A source in the CBI said, “For us, it was a challenge to match these photos with the ones on PMT and pre-PG forms, and advanced forensic software was used by experts, along with anthropometric principles, to overcome the morphing disguise of the existing pictures. However, our teams worked hard and identified 121 people who appeared for others, out of 9.5 lakh students”
In the May 2016 decision, justice J Chelameswar seeing the dangers involved in cancelling the admission held it would not be discreet to let the students waste the knowledge they had acquired so far. Taking the pragmatic view he asked them to serve with the army or in rural areas for five years without getting paid.
But his discernment was disputed by other judges who held that the malpractices yield only into cancellation of admissions.