The CBI has arrested seven persons including two directors of a Noida-based private institution in connection with alleged manipulation of JEE Mains examination 2021, officials said Friday.
The arrests were made after registration of a case against Affinity Education Pvt Ltd and three directors --Siddharth Krishna, Vishwambhar Mani Tripathi and Govind Varshney -- besides other touts and associates.
The agency has arrested Krishna and Tripathi besides four employees Ritik Singh, Anjum Dawoodani, Animesh Kumar Singh and Ajinkya Narhari Patil, the officials said.
Another person Ranjit Singh Thakur was arrested from Jamshedpur, they said.
Varshney, who had recently joined the company, is suspected to be on the run, they said, adding the agency is contemplating issuing a look-out notice against him.
The CBI had conducted searches at 19 locations on Thursday during which around 20-30 post-dated cheques were received which were suspected to be the payments for ensuring help in clearing the examination, the officials said.
During the searches, it surfaced that the accused had sent the messages to delete the data from their systems.
The agency has also stumbled upon leads which show that some payments were allegedly made through hawala channels as well, they said.
Senior CBI officials have assured that bona fide candidates need not worry.
The prestigious JEE Mains examination which is a stepping stone for IITs and NITs came under shadow of manipulation when the CBI booked Affinity Education Pvt Ltd and its directors for solving questions for candidates from remote access in return for huge payments.
It is alleged that the directors in conspiracy with other associates and touts were "manipulating the online examination of JEE (Mains) and facilitating aspiring students to get admission in top NITs in consideration of huge amount by solving the question paper of the applicant through remote access from a chosen examination centre in Sonepat(Haryana)", CBI Spokesperson RC Joshi had said.
Several others examination centres and a Bengaluru-based suspected mastermind of the alleged racket is also under scanner and the CBI is carrying out searches, the officials said.
It was also alleged that the accused used to obtain class 10 and 12 mark sheets, the user IDs, passwords, and post-dated cheques of aspiring students in different parts of country as security and once admission was done, they used to collect heavy amount ranging from Rs 12-15 lakh (approx) per candidate, Joshi had said.
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