GUWAHATI: With just a few months left for Assam to go to elections, the ruling BJP’s image has taken a beating following the leakage of question paper of a test for recruitment of police sub-inspectors.
One of the accused is a BJP leader, Diban Deka. He was handed over to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of Assam Police by a retired IPS officer, Pradeep Kumar. However, the CID let him off due to lack of evidence against him then. He is now evading arrest.
Kumar was the chairman of the State Level Police Recruitment Board (SLPRB) that conducted the test on September 20. He resigned from the post on Sunday owning moral responsibility.
A popular slogan of the BJP in Assam is zero-tolerance against corruption. The party had wrested power from the Congress promising to stamp out corruption. The Sarbananda Sonowal government earned kudos over the past four and half years after dozens of high-ranking officials were arrested for involvement in corruption. It is an irony that the BJP now finds itself mired in a controversy over corruption.
Allegations galore Deka was not arrested by the CID as he would have exposed several BJP leaders who were allegedly involved in the leakage of the question paper.
The fear that the government might manipulate the CID probe made opposition Congress to demand the case be investigated by a sitting judge of the Gauhati High Court.
“We are not happy over the manner in which the CID is probing the case. We demand that it be handed over to a sitting judge of the Gauhati High Court,” Congress spokesman Dilip Sharma said.
“CM Sonowal’s statements about zero-tolerance against corruption are nothing but a farce. Who helped the main villain Diban Deka to escape from the CID? Was he let off because the BJP feared he might reveal the names of the party’s big leaders who were involved in the scam?” the Congress asked.
A cornered BJP sought to put up a brave face by claiming that the leakage of test paper was not a scam but a goof-up. Party spokesman Rupam Goswami said the elusive Deka was not holding any post or position in the party. However, according to his Facebook profile, Deka is a “national executive member” of the BJP’s Kisan Morcha.
“The government will spare none found guilty,” Goswami asserted. He said some elements were trying to tarnish the images of Sonowal and the BJP.
Over the past few days, the police arrested a few individuals in connection with the case. One PK Dutta, who is a former Deputy Inspector General of Police and an accused in the case, has also gone into hiding.
The test to fill up 597 posts was cancelled even while the candidates were writing their answers in exam halls.