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UGC-NET Exam Cancelled, BJP Leader Accuse Tejashwi Yadav to be Involved in NEET paper Leak

UGC-NET Exam Cancelled, BJP Leader Accuse Tejashwi Yadav to be Involved in NEET paper Leak

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Manas Dasgupta

NEW DELHI, June 20: In the face of the centre cancelling the June 18 examination of the UGC-NET conducted by the National Testing Agency and handing over to the CBI to probe into possible paper leak, political slugfest is on over alleged paper leak in the more popular National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET-UG), also conducted by the NTA, with the Bihar deputy chief minister  Vijay Kumar Sinha on Thursday accusing the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader and former deputy chief minister Tejashwi Yadav to be involved in the alleged paper leak.

Showing the Whatsapp call details and messages, Mr Sinha while addressing the press at the road construction department office in Patna said, “On May 1, a call was made by Pritam Kumar from his mobile to Pradeep Kumar at 9:07 p.m. to book a room in NHAI (National Highways Authority of India) guest in the name of Sikandar Prasad Yadavendu. Pradeep Kumar is working in the road construction department of Bihar whereas Pritam Kumar was private secretary to Tejashwi Yadav when he was serving the ministry,” Mr Sinha said.

He also showed the text message sent to Pradeep Kumar in which it was written to book one room for May 4 and 5 in the name of Mr Sikandar. Mr Sinha asserted Mr Kumar did take notice of the message and no room was allotted. Mr Sinha further said the investigating agency must question Tejashwi Yadav and Pritam Kumar so that truth can be found out.

Sikandar Prasad Yadavendu is one of the accused in the paper leak case and his name has come to limelight after the confession of one of the students. Bihar’s Economic Offences Unit (EOU) is investigating the NEET paper leak case and on Wednesday, nine students were called along with their parents to appear before the investigating agency.

The NHAI, a Government of India organisation, however, has clarified that they do not have any guesthouse in Patna. “Some sections of the press have reported that the accused related to NEET paper leak case stayed at NHAI guest house in Patna. NHAI would like to clarify that NHAI does not have any guest house facility in Patna. Media is, accordingly, requested to take note of the same and correct the erroneous report if already released,” the National Highways Authority of India said in its statement.

The confession by one student before the EOU has revealed shocking facts. The confessional statement of Anurag Yadav from Patna said that he was preparing for the NEET exam in Kota and his uncle Sikandar Prasad Yadavendu, who is a junior engineer in Danapur Municipal Corporation said that on May 5, there would be NEET exam so he much return to Patna as the setting was done.

“I returned from Kota and my uncle Sikandar Prasad Yadavendu dropped me at the house of Amit Anand and Nitish Kumar where he was given a question paper and answers sheet for the NEET exam. The entire night I was asked to memorise all the answers. My exam centre was DY Patil School and the same questions were asked in the exam which I was made to memorise the whole night,” Anurag Yadav, the accused in the case wrote in the confessional statement.

The NEET aspirant further said when he sat to write the exam, the actual question paper, matched with the one his uncle provided. Yadavendu, who has been named by Yadav, also confessed to the police saying he took Rs 40 lakh each from four aspirants in exchange for the leaked paper.

RJD leader and Rajya Sabha member Manoj Jha hit back at the Bihar Government calling them unfit people. “Around 25 lakh students are affected by the NEET exam and it should be cancelled. Attempts are being made to bring the name of Tejashwi Yadav which shows their little knowledge. They are unfit people and there is no government in the state. So far 13 people belonging to Bihar have been arrested in connection with the case. Out of 13, four students have been arrested who took the NEET exam.

On the other hand, the RJD has blamed the BJP and the JDU for the NEET paper mess. “NEET test exposes BJP and JDU connections! The NEET paper was leaked in the three states governed by BJP, Bihar, Gujarat and Haryana. The involvement of BJP leaders came to light in all three places. The Union Education Minister is constantly saying that no paper has been leaked anywhere, while the opposition and lakhs of candidates are constantly saying that paper leak has happened,” RJD tweeted.

In the UGC-NET test, the Union Education Ministry on Thursday said it had handed over the matter to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for probe.

Speaking at a press conference in the national capital, Education Ministry Joint Secretary Govind Jaiswal said prima facie the government felt the exam had been compromised. “No complaints were received but the inputs we received from agencies indicated that the integrity of the exam has been compromised. The action was taken suo motu to safeguard the interests of the students,” Jaiswal said.

“9 lakh students had participated in the UGC-NET exam that the National Testing Agency (NTA) conducted on June 18. The ministry saw that there was a chance that the examination had been compromised. The ministry has decided to cancel the examination. The next date will be declared soon. The matter has been referred to the CBI,” he added.

The move follows protests and demands by student groups outside the residence of Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, who called for an investigation into alleged paper leaks and corruption within the NTA. Several members of the Congress-affiliated NSUI were detained today while protesting outside Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan’s residence here against the cancellation of the UGC-NET examination.

Addressing a press conference in Delhi, Congress MP Rahul Gandhi attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi over cancellation of UGC-NET. “It was being said that Modi ji stopped the Russia-Ukraine war. But due to some reasons, Narendra Modi has not been able to stop or doesn’t want to stop paper leaks in India,” he said.

Late on Wednesday night, the Union education ministry ordered the cancellation of UGC-NET following inputs of the exam’s integrity being compromised. Members of the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) led by its national president Varun Choudhary gathered outside Pradhan’s residence and demanded a ban on the NTA and a probe into the alleged incidents of paper leak.




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