The question papers of the Karnataka Teachers’ Eligibility Test–2014 (KARTET), held on Sunday, were allegedly leaked a day before as 10 question papers were sold for Rs 1 lakh each to candidates in the City.
The envelope containing the question papers for morning and afternoon sessions was part of a bundle that was set to be dispatched to a test centre in Koppal.
Bangalore’s Central Crime Branch (CCB) police, which unearthed the scam on Saturday night, arrested 13 people, including some candidates, in this connection.
The kingpin was identified as Shivakumar, 65, a resident of Nandini Layout, who was involved in several question paper leak cases in the past. The police also suspect the role of officials in the incident.
Department of Public Instruction (DPI) Commissioner Mohammed Mohsin. however, dismissed the leak as a “rumour”. “We have not received any information—oral or written—from any quarters.
I have asked the Central Admission Cell (CAC) to keep a tab on the matter.” Special Officer of CAC, B V Rajashekar said: “No discrepancy has been reported from any of the 694 centres and I don’t think there will be a re-examination. The DPI Commissioner will send a report to the government.”
As many as 3.77 lakh candidates appeared for the test held to decide the eligibility of candidates as primary schoolteachers in government, aided and private schools. This is the first time the test was conducted.
Police said the question papers were leaked in Bangalore. As many as 120 candidates were expected to appear for the test at Bannikatti Centre in Koppal.
The CAC dispatched a bundle with 13 envelopes containing 10 question papers each.
“The suspects knew that the centre required only 120 question papers. But on top of the bundle, they mentioned the number of envelopes as ‘13’ and kept 12 envelops in the bundle while retaining one with them so that the act would not affect the examination in Koppal. They decided to choose the Koppal Centre as they thought it would go unnoticed,” said the sources in the CCB.
Koppal DDPI G H Veeranna said the centre received the bundle with indication on its top that it contained 13 envelopes, but on verification it was found out that one envelope was missing. “I will submit a report to CAC,” he said.
The police said they arrested Shivakumar near Nandini Layout on Saturday night when he was travelling in a car carrying the question papers. The police matched the question papers they seized from him with those that were issued to candidates at test centres on Sunday.
Both the question papers were identical, Joint Commissioner of (Crime) Hemanth Nimbalkar told Deccan Herald. Shivakumar might have sold the question papers to around 150 candidates, he said.