Three men have been arrested for the leak of the Class 12 chemistry exam paper in Bengaluru – not once but twice – and among them is a minister’s top aide.
Oblaraju, personal assistant to Medical Education Minister Sharanaparakash Rudrappa Patil, was arrested in the afternoon. The police say he accessed the question paper easily and circulated it.
The others arrested are Rudrappa, an office manager, and Manjunath, a physical education teacher and insurance agent. They both allegedly received the questions from Oblaraju and sold them for lakhs. Manjunath allegedly sold the question papers for over Rs. 10 lakh.
“They did it for money…some of their relatives were also giving exams,” said Sonia Narang, an officer of the CID or Criminal Investigation Department, which was asked to inquire into the repeated leaks after complaints from students and parents.
Last week, hundreds of Class 12 students protested on the streets of Bengaluru after their chemistry exam was cancelled for the second time in 10 days. As the protests turned violent and chaotic, the police stepped in.
“We are not ready to write this exam at any cost…Let them give us whichever date,” one of the students shouted outside the department in charge of the exam. Angry students even threw stones at windows of the building.
As the protesters tried to draw out officials, a parent went to a terrace and threatened to jump. Another student fainted and was taken to hospital.
The chemistry exam was to take place on March 22 but was cancelled and rescheduled for Thursday after a student told education authorities that the question paper had been leaked.
Hours before the second exam, around 3.30 am, the CID told the government that the question paper had been leaked again and students should be advised not to come to the exam centres.
The CID reportedly sent education officials three question papers that were in circulation hours before the exam. One of them matched the question paper.