A whistle-blower in Madhya Pradesh's Vyapam scam was transferred even as the Supreme Court on Monday allowed the Special Investigative Team and Special Task Force of the state to file chargesheets in the massive admission and recruitment fraud till all cases are transferred to CBI.
The matter rocked the Madhya Pradesh assembly on the first day of the monsoon session with opposition Congress members wanting to pay tributes to the Vyapam Shaheed, the people linked to the scandal who died under mysterious circumstances, leading to noisy scenes.
Days after Anand Rai, a government doctor and one of the whistle-blowers in the scam, lodged a complaint with the CBI against senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader and former Union minister Vikram Verma, he was transferred from Indore to a hospital in Dhar district.
Rai had alleged in his complaint that Verma used his influence to get his daughter, pursuing MBBS course in SantoshMedicalCollege in Ghaziabad, transferred to Gandhi Medical College in Bhopal.
Rai, who was on deputation to the health department's training institute in Indore, was transferred on Sunday. His wife, also a doctor, was shifted from civil hospital in Mhow in Indore to Ujjain district hospital last month.
Rai said he will challenge his transfer in court, but the government insisted it was a "routine" thing.
"Rai was posted in Dhar but was attached to the facility in Indore. The government has ended all such attachments. It is a routine thing," Health Commissioner Pankaj Agarwal said.
The whistle-blower, however, said he was being "hounded". "I am being hounded for lodging a complaint against Verma on July 17 and exposing the Vyapam scam. People involved in the wrongdoings are running the state," he alleged.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court, which had on July 9 ordered a CBI probe in the scandal, accepted the central agency's prayer to permit the STF and SIT of Madhya Pradesh to file charge sheets in cases where investigation has been completed.
The CBI had on July 16 approached the apex court with the plea, contending since transfer of more than 185 Vyapam scam cases from the SIT to the CBI will take time the state investigating agencies be allowed to file chargesheets in cases where the probe has been completed.
“Otherwise, the accused will get statutory bail on account of default of non-filing of chargesheets within stipulated time period,” the probe agency had said.
Apart from the fraud in conduct of various examinations for appointment to various government posts and admissions to professional institutions by the Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board, also known by its Hindi acronym Vyapam, the CBI is also investigating cases of mysterious deaths of people related to the scandal.
Congress has claimed 49 people associated with the scam have died mysteriously or in accidents and suicides, while the state government has put the figure at 25.
Uproarious scenes were witnessed in the MP assembly when Leader of Opposition Satyadev Katare, while paying tributes to leaders who had died during the inter-session period, also mentioned the mysterious deaths of Akshay Singh and Namrata Damor. The CBI has registered FIRs and is probing the two deaths.
Damor, an MBBS student and suspected beneficiary of the scam, was found dead near the railway tracks. Police had first probed the case from the angle of murder but closed it after concluding it was an accidental death. Akshay Singh, a journalist with TV today group died recently minutes after interviewing her parents.
As Katare referred to Damor and Singh, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Narottam Mishra raised a point of order, contending a member has to obtain permission of the Speaker before raising an issue which is not part of the listed business of the House.
Rejecting his contention, several members from the opposition began citing cases of unnatural deaths of people linked to the scam whom they called Vyapam Shaheed, resulting in pandemonium.