Nationwide Defence recruitment racket busted

Nationwide Defence recruitment racket busted

The accused were identified R C Naikh and D S Murthi - both administration officers in Western and Eastern Naval Commands respectively, Ranbir Singh Rawat owner of Manasa International defence recruitment agency in Andhra Pradesh's Vishakapatnam and Haryana-based teacher Hoshiyar Singh.

The four would be produced before a court tomorrow, Rishi Raj Singh, Joint Director, said adding they had leaked the question paper of Lower Division Clerk recruitment examination to 150 candidates, who appeared for the exam here today.

The exam was held to fill up 175 clerks posts at Western Naval Command Headquarters and over 35,000 candidates appeared to write the exam.

"This is a serious offence. These people put country's security at stake and tried to ensure that unqualified candidates get the jobs," Singh said.

"The accused took anything between Rs 15,000 and Rs 50,000 from the 150 candidates, who hail from various parts of the country," Singh added.

All these 150 candidates will now be our witnesses in the case, Singh said adding, "we will write to senior officials concerned in the Navy to take appropriate action on these candidates."

They were also probing if any more defence officials were involved in the racket, CBI officer Singh said.

"We had a tip off that Naikh, the prime accused, leaked the question paper using a pen drive and handed it over to his colleague Murthi who in return took a number of printed copies of the question paper at Pune," Singh said.

The copies were then handed over to Rawat, also a former sailor with Indian Navy, who had put up the 150 candidates in United Lodge at Crawford Market.

Rawat is also operating over 15 placement agencies all over the country, the CBI said.
"Some of the candidates were given printed copies of question paper while some were asked to take down questions. Hoshiyar Singh had told the answers to the various questions to the candidates," Singh added.

The rooms in the lodge in which they checked were raided and the copies of the printed question paper were recovered from the possession of Rawat and Murthi, who stayed in a hotel in Colaba.

"Cash of Rs 1.85 lakh and several bank deposit receipts were also recovered from the accused," he said.

"We have also seized a register in which it was mentioned which candidate had given how much and who is yet to pay," Singh said adding searches were on at seven places in Delhi, Vishakapatnam, Pune and Navi Mumbai.

"During the questioning, the accused admitted that the question paper for the same post at Eastern Naval Command were also leaked in a similar way," he said.

The exam to fill up 400 posts in Eastern Naval Command was held last month where over 45,000 candidates appeared for the exam.

"The racket has a widespread network and there is a strong possibility that they have also leaked question papers of other examinations conducted earlier," he added.

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