Vyapam Scam: 5 Medical Students Ask President of India for Permission to Die

The students of Gajra Raja Medical College have written to President Pranab Mukherjee.

Bhopal: Five students of Madhya Pradesh's Gajra Raja Medical College, who had been accused in the Vyapam scam, have written to the President of India, seeking justice, or the permission to die.

They allege that though they cleared their name, they are being discriminated against by the students and teachers of the college.

The students were among the 2500 accused in the scam -- which involved a blatant, statewide manipulation of recruitment exams for colleges and government jobs through bribery.

In their letter, the students claimed they had cleared the PMT exam -- the entrance test for medical courses -- in 2010. But three years later, they were made an accused in the case after it was found that their photos and signatures in the admit card failed to match with the college identity card.

Impersonation of candidates by outsiders was one of the ploys used for cheating in the exams and the students were among 95 others who were booked on suspicion.

These students, however, cleared their name though fingerprint tests and later approached the High Court for permission to continue studies, which was granted. They even obtained a stay on the police case against them.

The Gwalior-based college readmitted them, but the students now say they face discrimination.

"People see as someone with a court case against him. They call us names like impostors. Even our answer sheets are kept separately," said Amit Chhadha.

"This is torture... We want justice, or we want permission to die," he added as the four others petitioners - Manish Gupta, Vikash Gupta, Raghavendra Bhadauria and Pankaj Bansal, nodded  agreement.

The college authorities say they have received no complaint from the students. "There is no question of discriminating with any student," said the Executive Dean Dr JS Sikarwar.  

Vyapam is the acronym for the Hindi name of the state's exam board. The scam, which has engulfed the Madhya Pradesh government and is said to involve ministers, judges and bureaucrats, has caused a countrywide political storm.