After Raghunath Mohanty resigned from the Cabinet following allegation of dowry torture against him, the BJP is now baying for the blood of Minister for Higher Education Badrinarayan Patra over Plus Two question paper leak.
Allegation of dowry torture is a serious crime but the question paper leak is more serious as future of over three lakh students is at stake, said former minister for higher education Samir Dey at a Press conference. “If Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik could ask Mohanty to tender resignation, why cannot he do the same in case of Patra,” Dey questioned.
The Higher Education Minister cannot absolve his responsibility by shifting the blame to officers of the Council for Higher Secondary Education (CHSE). He is equally responsible for the laxity and should resign, Dey said.
Alleging involvement of Patra in the question paper leak, Dey said the last minute changes of examination centres would not be possible without the approval of the Minister. There is an organised racket in the question paper leak, he said adding CHSE officials, private colleges and the office of the Higher Education Minister are hands in glove.
Dey, who was minister for higher education from 2004 to 2009, said such irregularities never took place from 2000 to 2009 when BJP ministers were in charge of the department.
National vice-president of the BJP Yuva Morcha Bhrugu Buxipatra said Deputy Secretary of the council’s regional office at Sambalpur Debendra Behera has reportedly told the police investigating the matter that he had paid ` 12 lakh to the son of the Higher Education Minister to continue there. He was in the regional office for the last eight years.
While Behera claimed that he had informed the Government in writing that his son was appearing Plus Two examination, Buxipatra sought to know why the Government did not relieve him from the examination duty.
Claiming that Controller of Examination of the Council Yashobant Behera is a relative of the Deputy Secretary, Buxipatra said Behera has been continuing in the post for the third year which is against the established norms.
The Yuva Morcha will launch statewide agitation by demonstrating in front of the offices of the collectors, CHSE and its regional offices on March 20 to press for resignation of Patra.