2019 TNPSC scam: Madras HC orders CBI probe

The case pertains to candidates using ‘vanishing ink’ at two centres while taking the TNPSC examination, in which the CB-CID arrested 118 persons.
A file photo of the Madras High Court
A file photo of the Madras High Court
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The Madurai bench of the Madras High Court on Tuesday, December 14, ordered a CBI investigation into the Tamil Nadu Public Service Corporation (TNPSC) Group IV scam of 2019, September. According to the CB-CID chargesheet, 99 persons had taken the TNPSC examination for recruitment of Class IV employees using 'vanishing ink' at Rameswaram and Keelakari examination centres and later with the help of two staff members of TNPSC tampered with the answer sheets while being transported in a van. The CB-CID arrested 118 persons.

However, the complainant argued that higher officials were involved in the case and two lower-level TNPSC officers will not be able to do such a scam without the connivance of higher officials. The order of the division bench of the Madurai bench of the Madras High Court comprising Justices Pushpa Satyanarayana and P Velmurugan passed the order on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by Advocate Mohammed Razvi.

The litigant Mohammed Rizvi appealed to the court that the Tamil Nadu CB-CID that was investigating the case had arrested only certain middlemen and candidates and could not arrest any others. In the PIL, Mohammed Razvi petitioned that a scam of such magnitude could not have taken place without the connivance of higher officials and political leaders.

He appealed before the court that the CB-CID may not expose the role of higher officials in the scam and wanted the case to be transferred to the CBI. The CB-CID had, in its counter-response, said that only two officials of the TNPSC, a clerk and a record keeper were involved in the scam and that no other officials were involved in the scam.

The court had during the hearing last month, orally enquired the TNPSC as to why the tampering of the wax seal in the van that had carried the answer sheets was not identified at the first instance. The court had also asked as to why the examination conducted in the two centres where malpractices had taken place was not canceled and adjourned the case to the hearing on December 14. The court ordered the CBI to conduct a free and fair investigation and to complete the proceedings without any inordinate delay.

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