Expressing satisfaction over the STF probe in the MPPEB scam, Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Babulal Gaur has said the state government would not have an objection if a court hands over the inquiry to CBI.
“The Special Task Force (STF) is probing the ‘Vyapam’ (Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board) scam under the direct supervision of Madhya Pradesh High Court. The state government has no role in it and it can’t even transfer any STF official involved in the inquiry,” Gaur told PTI here today.
“Despite this, if the High Court or Supreme Court hand over the probe to CBI, the state government would not have any objection to it,” he said, while responding to the demand to this effect by Congress.
When asked about Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh’s move to file a petition in the High Court on the issue, Gaur said, “He has every right to do so.”
“A total of 14 petitions, including that by Congress leaders, were filed in the High Court demanding CBI probe into the scam, but all of them were dismissed by the court,” the BJP leader said.
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“The STF is doing its job properly and had arrested a former minister (Laxmikant Sharma) and a DIG-level IPS officer. Besides, it has to submit its report every fortnight to the High Court,” the minister said.
On the Congress’ allegation that STF was dealing in the case selectively and not taking action against then MPPEB chairperson Ranjana Choudhary (retd IAS officer) and also against a senior RSS leader, Gaur said, “You cannot arrest anybody merely on the ground of anybody’s statement. There has to be a circumstantial or corroborative evidence against them.”
“The STF is working close to 16 hours everyday and has prepared a detailed report that runs into over five lakh pages as the scam involves number of examinations,” Gaur said.
MPPEB scam was busted in 2013, when the Indore Crime Branch arrested few alleged impostors after a tip-off that they were camping in a city hotel and would appear in the Pre Medical Test (PMT) organised by it (MPPEB).
Later, the probe was handed over to the STF by state Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan for a detailed inquiry as proofs of involvement of some high profile people were found during initial investigations.
Besides a former minister and a DIG, a number of doctors, top officials of MPPEB, impostors and students were arrested by the STF since the scam broke out, opening up a ‘Pandora’s box’ for the government.
The Congress also levelled allegations against Chouhan in connection with the scam, but failed to provide any concrete evidence against him.
Chouhan had also filed a defamation suit against state Congress chief spokesperson K K Mishra for levelling baseless allegations against him and his wife.