A multi-state racket offering "confirmed" seats in medical courses have been detected with the arrest of eight people by the Central Bureau of Investigation yesterday. The cheating operation – spread across Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Haryana -- worked in the way showed in Bollywood blockbuster "Munnabhai MBBS". Expert paper solvers impersonated students and wrote answer sheets in exchange of huge sums.
Each seat cost Rs 20 lakh, of which 5 lakh was given to the person who impersonated the student and solved the NEET (the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test) question paper, said sources in the agency. The rest is shared by the middlemen and others.
On Monday, the agency made the arrests from Delhi -- six of the eight solved NEET papers, sources said. The mastermind is one Sushil Ranjan, who deputed "paper solvers" and accepted payments. Eleven people were named in the case and the hunt is on for the rest.
To broaden the scope of the investigation, the agency will now speak to the candidates. The role of coaching institutions will also come under the scanner, officials said.
To stop cheating, the authorities have tightened security checks for NEET, where wallets, handbags, belts, caps, jewellery, shoes and heels are banned in the exam hall. Candidates are also not allowed to carry any stationery.
But this racket managed to tweak NEET identity cards using morphed photographs, so that paper solvers could gain entrance in the exam hall. The accused also collected user IDs and passwords of the candidates and made necessary changes to get the desired examination centres.
The NEET undergraduate exam – held on July 17 this year – is meant for admission to medical and dental courses. It also the gateway for Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani and Homeopathic medicine and nursing courses.