The exam, meant for close relatives of army personnel, was to take place at multiple centres across the country, but was cancelled when the paper leak came to light.

A man writing an examRepresentative Image: Picxy.com
news Crime Tuesday, May 18, 2021 - 18:42

An officer of the lieutenant colonel rank arrested from Secunderabad was the "main culprit" in the Army recruitment paper leak case, investigators claimed on Tuesday. Lt Col Bhagatpreet Singh Bedi (44) was the one who leaked the paper, said a police officer a day after the arrest.

Bedi was responsible for the printing of the question paper for the local centre for the `Army Relation Recruitment Exam' scheduled for February 28. The exam, meant for close relatives of army personnel, was to take place at multiple centres across the country, but was cancelled when the paper leak came to light.

"Probe revealed that he was in charge of the printing of the paper before the exam at AOC centre Secunderabad and he leaked it," said Vitthal Patil, senior police inspector, Anti-Extortion Cell. A team of Pune police comprising Assistant Police Inspector Shirish Bhalerao, police personnel Atul Sathe and Pravin Rajput took him in custody from Secunderabad, he said.

Before that, his associate Virprasad Narnepati (41), posted as store keeper at the ordnance depot in Delhi, was arrested. So far nine persons have been arrested in the case. As per the procedure, just before the exam, every centre is forwarded a secure link from which the question paper is downloaded and printed.

"During the printing Bedi managed to get a copy while ensuring that the act was not captured by CCTV cameras. He forwarded it to Narnepati who was staying in a hotel in Secunderabad," said another officer acquainted with the probe.

Narnepati forwarded the paper to one Narsing Rao, who passed it on to one Pawan, he said.

Pawan allegedly sent the paper to Vilas Kilari, a major-rank officer, who sent it to Thiru Murugan Thangvelu, another major-rank officer. While Narsing Rao and Vinay are wanted, Kilari and Thanvelu have already been arrested. Eventually the leaked paper was sold to some exam candidates.

"Bedi was supposed to get Rs 1 lakh per candidate. He apparently received some money, but had to refund it when the exam got cancelled," said the police officer. Bedi was produced before a court in Pune on Tuesday and sent in police custody till May 25, said Assistant Public Prosecutor Premkumar Agrawal.

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