Librarian, 10 students held for fraud
By Express News Service | Published: 14th December 2012 07:53 AM |
College libraries are supposed to be repositories of knowledge for students. But the library at the Aryabhata Engineering College in Maheswaram near here was where a book keeper conceived and executed what is being called the Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University B.Tech answer-sheet scam.
Thirty four-year-old Venkatesh’s plan of helping students with several backlogs banked on the fact that after any exam, the transportation of used answer sheets from colleges to JNTU’s examination branches takes time. He enlisted the help of C Balu Mahender, a driver in the mail motor service at the postal department, Koti. It was Mahender’s job to collect answer sheet bundles from various engineering colleges and transport them to the exam branch.
Venkatesh told Mahender to pick out the answer sheets of certain students from the bundles. The book keeper then gave out these sheets to students for `5,000 to `10,000 each. The students involved had, during the exam, attached several blank sheets, to their answer papers. When they received them from Venkatesh, they filled up the spaces with the correct answers in the comfort of their rooms, before returning them to Venkatesh.
The students who were arrested include M Jai Ram Reddy, T Hari, Shaik Mahaldar Hussain Basha, D Kirthi Verdhan Deeraj, Sai Pranay, Dheeraj Reddy, M Sridhar, E Anvesh, Setty Ravi Shankar and M Rakesh Reddy. Jai Ram Reddy, Sai Pranay and Kirthi Verdhan Deeraj acted as agents of Venkatesh.
“Venkatesh and Balu Mahender tampered with the seal on the answer booklets by accepting Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000 per paper, gave them to students to fill in with the correct answers and then again replaced them among the answer sheet bundles,” DCP East Zone, R Jaya Lakshmi said.
Police seized nine bundles of sealed answer sheets dated December 11 and December 12 of Bharath College, Ibrahimpatnam, Srinidhi College, Ghatkesar, Science College, Ibrahimpatnam, Aware Madhavanji College, Maheswaram, and Arora College, Uppal while they were being transported in a Xylo vehicle (AP 12 H 9012) to the rooms of the students. The cops also seized 68 loose answer sheets from the possession of the accused along with Rs 60,000.
The police have registered cases against the accused under section 406 (Criminal Breach of Trust), 419 (Punishment for cheating by personation), 420( cheating), 468 (Forgery for purpose of cheating), 471 (Using as genuine a forged document) read with Section 8 of the Andhra Pradesh Public Examinations (Prevention of Malpractices and Unfair (means) Act.
Meanwhile, JNTUH registrar Dr N V Ramana Rao said that action will be taken against colleges if they were involved in the answer-sheet scam. “A 10-member committee will be formed by the university to investigate the matter.We will suspend the students and officials found guilty and a show-cause notice will be issued to these engineering colleges with a view of cancelling their affiliation,” he said.
“We do not have a staffforce at the university to oversee all affiliated colleges and hence we use staff from one college to monitor the proceedings at other colleges. The answer sheets which were tampered with were mainly for the supplementary examinations. There is a need to plug all loop-holes,” the registrar added