A former state BJP leader who is a prime accused in the Assam Police question paper scam was arrested on Thursday.
The accused, Diban Deka, has been terminated from primary membership of BJP following his arrest, the party’s state unit president, Ranjeet Dass, told the media.
The case relates to leak of question paper for an examination to recruit sub-inspectors in the state police force. Another prime accused in the case, former DIG P K Dutta, remains absconding still.
Deka was remanded in five-day police custody.
“Diban Deka has been arrested in connection with the Guwahati Crime Branch case. Police custody would be sought on production (in court) today,” ADGP (Law and Order) G P Singh told The Indian Express earlier in the day.
The police said in a statement that a Crime Branch team, on receiving information regarding Deka, was sent to Lower Assam on Wednesday morning. Around midnight, while the police team was checking near Pathsala town, Deka was found travelling with his wife.
The exam for recruitment for 597 posts of police sub-inspectors, for which over 66,000 candidates were to appear, was scheduled on September 20 but was cancelled following preliminary reports that the question paper was leaked and circulated on WhatsApp.
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had directed the State-Level Police Recruitment Board (SLPRB) to conduct the examination within a month.
State BJP chief Dass told reporters on Thursday that Deka’s arrest comes after his (Dass’s) appeal to the state government that if any BJP worker or leader is involved in the case, he/she should be arrested first. Dass distanced the party from Deka by saying that Deka was not given any party position in the last three years that he has been the state unit president.
Deka had unsuccessfully contested 2011 Assembly elections on a BJP ticket from Barkhetry constituency.
The issue has rocked the state over the last week, with Opposition Congress demanding the Chief Minister’s resignation, and Sonowal reiterating that all culprits will be brought to book at the earliest.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, Sonowal said, “No leniency or compromise would be tolerated in the inquiry.”
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