“Yeh question aa sakta hai”; “Yeh galat question hai”; “Kisne bheje hain yeh questions?”; “CBSE se aaye hain?” These are some of the chat messages recovered from four WhatsApp groups named in the FIR regarding the CBSE Class XII economics paper leak, registered on March 27. According to sources in the Crime Branch, the four groups named in the FIR had received a handwritten question paper from one of the group members a day before the exam was supposed to be held. At the time, most of the group members did not believe that these were the same questions that would be asked the next day.
Some group members — mostly teachers and principals from various schools in Delhi-NCR — reacted spontaneously. A teacher asked: “Has this been done by the CBSE?”; another replied, “These are wrong questions”. The next day, though, the paper ended all confusion: many questions were, indeed, the same.
There are over 100 members in all four groups mentioned in the FIR. The names of the groups have been withheld as police are still questioning members, including many teachers with well-known schools.
According to police sources, one of the groups received photos of handwritten questions from a group member. On seeing this, the members chipped in and said they, too, had received handwritten questions on WhatsApp. “This way, a number of chains surfaced during the investigation. The original source of the leak, though, is yet to be identified,” an officer said. It was the WhatsApp chain through which the SIT managed to get its first breakthrough in the paper leak.
Another module had, meanwhile, leaked the paper 45 minutes before the exam. In that case, the Crime Branch arrested three teachers from Bawana for their alleged involvement. “While investigating, various chains came out from the four WhatsApp groups, and a team reached a Class XII student, who revealed the name of one of the teachers,” said an officer. On Monday, police questioned the school principal and a CBSE official.
“For us, the major challenge is to reach out to the person who has written the questions and circulated them on WhatsApp before the exams. He might be from the teachers’ group who prepared the paper, printing press or officials from where these paper are kept before being sent to the examination centres,” said an investigator. The Crime Branch also has to track the person who left an envople outside the office of the CBSE chairman on March 26.