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Army recruitment exam paper leak: Army says will make recruitment process more foolproof and robust

The Indian Express has learnt that the role of one more individual serving in the Army is now being probed in addition to the two serving personnel arrested earlier in the case.

Written by Sushant Kulkarni | Pune |
March 4, 2021 9:53:45 pm
Army recruitment exam paper leakAfter the leak came to light, the Pune police registered two separate offences at Wanawadi and Vishrantwadi police stations, denoting actions by two separate teams of the crime branch into the same examination process. In the case registered at Vishrantwadi police station, three persons, including an ex-serviceman, were arrested. (Representational)

Days after the Army recruitment exam paper leak, the Indian Army said on Thursday that the existing system of recruitment process will be made more foolproof and robust by incorporating the findings of the joint investigation by Army authorities and Maharashtra Police.

The Indian Express has learnt that the role of one more individual serving in the Army is now being probed in addition to the two serving personnel arrested earlier in the case.

A Pune police official said, “As part of our probe into few specific leads, we have identified a few more suspects and have sent our teams to apprehend them. We are probing the role of one uniformed individual, who has been identified but is yet to be questioned by us. As the probe is progressing, we are getting further details about how the paper was leaked, how it was sent further, how the aspirants were tapped etc.”

In a joint operation by the Southern Command Liaison Unit of the Military Intelligence and the Crime Branch of Pune City Police, multiple raids were conducted last week leading to the recovery of the question paper of the Common Entrance Exam (CEE) for recruitment of Soldier (General Duty), prior to the exam, indicating a leak. The exam was scheduled to take place on February 28. Once the probe confirmed the leak, the Army had cancelled the examination, which was slated to take place in 40 centres across India. At least 30,000 candidates were expected to take the exam.

The Indian Army said in a statement on Thursday, “In pursuance of the Indian Army’s resolve to ensure transparency and eliminate corrupt practices in recruitment, Indian Army and Maharashtra State Police are jointly investigating the recent case of leakage of question paper for Common Entrance Examination for recruitment of Soldiers (General Duty). The findings of the inquiry will be incorporated in the existing system of recruitment process to make it more foolproof and robust. Due process of law will be followed to proceed against persons who may have violated the standard operating procedures for conduct of such examinations.”

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After the leak came to light, the Pune police registered two separate offences at Wanawadi and Vishrantwadi police stations, denoting actions by two separate teams of the crime branch into the same examination process. In the case registered at Vishrantwadi police station, three persons, including an ex-serviceman, were arrested. In the case at Wanawadi police station, two serving Army personnel and two others were initially arrested. Two more persons were arrested on Wednesday, taking the total number of arrests in the case to nine till now.

The Indian Express has reported earlier that the coordinated probe by Pune police and Military Intelligence has also brought to light how exactly the paper was leaked using loopholes in the system. On the other hand, the Army is planning to conduct an internal inquiry following the completion of the ongoing probe by police in tandem with the Military Intelligence. The internal inquiry will try to ascertain possible procedural lapses that might have caused or aided the alleged paper leak.

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