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Posts Tagged ‘Ram Naresh Yadav

Resort to violence for imposing its misconceived nationalist ideology is not something which the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) has recently acquired. It received nationwide attention only because its operations were taking place in the national capital.

So long as the BJP remained mostly out of power in the States and at the Centre, the ABVP kept its activities confined to demonstrations on college/university issues, by and large. As the BJP started gaining power in the States, the ABVP also started coming out of its veneer of an organisation concerned with the students’ problems. The BJP governments even placed the police force in the service of the rowdy ABVP activists.

The late Madhya Pradesh Governor Ram Naresh Yadav who, though a Congressman, had become virtually a lackey of the State’s BJP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan to utter chagrin of the Congress leaders of the State. He had been willingly endorsing wrong actions and decisions of the BJP government. Even he had lost his patience with the ABVP in the State and was constrained to write a letter to the Chief Minister directing him to ‘keep a check on the anarchic ABVP activists as they are indulging in unlawful activities and polluting the academic atmosphere in the State.’ Did Chouhan heed the Governor’s advice? Nonsense!

Prof.  H S Sabharwal of the Madhav College in Ujjain was asked to conduct the students’ union elections in August 2006. Following some irregularities, he cancelled the elections which infuriated the ABVP activists. Prof Sabharwal was thrashed by the activists and eventually he died.

Initially, the police arrested 22 persons, mostly belonging to the Congress, in connection with the rowdiness on the Madhav College campus. However, under public pressure (the attack on Prof. Sabharwal had made the national headlines), 12 students owing allegiance to ABVP were named accused in the murder. Ultimately, the challan under Sections 302 and 147 IPC was put up against six of them. They were: Shashi Ranjan Akela (State President of ABVP); Vimal Tomar (Divisional Organising Secretary, ABVP); Vishal Rajoria (member of State Executive, ABVP); Hemant Dube (District Convener, ABVP); Sudhir Yadav and Pankaj Mishra (activists of ABVP).

While the police ‘investigation’ in the murder was going on, the Chief Minister had a 20-minute one-to-one talk with Vimal Tomar, one of the six accused. Tomar, then in custody in Ujjain, was admitted to the State-run M Y Hospital at Indore purportedly for treatment. Chauhan met him there. Tomar was ‘cured’ immediately after meeting the Chief Minister and was sent back to the custody at Ujjain.

As the witnesses (even the policemen who were eye-witnesses) started turning hostile, the murdered Professor’s son Himanshu knocked on the doors of the Supreme Court which transferred the trial of the case from Ujjain to Nagpur. The judge there acquitted the accused on the ground that the prosecution had failed to put up the evidence.


The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has started disappointing the people with its investigation of the Vyapam scam. There is now an apprehension that it may only be cooperating with Special Task Force (STF) of Madhya Pradesh police in trying to save big-wigs involved in the scam. 

Disposing of a number of petitions in the midst of a nation-wide outrage over several deaths suspected to be related to Vyapam scam, the Supreme Court had directed CBI in July last year to take over investigation of Vyapam scam cases from STF headed by an IPS officer of the rank of Additional Director General of Police. But the CBI investigation in the past eight months has not come up with anything to sustain people’s faith in the impartiality of the country’s premier investigation agency. 

It was largely through his own initiative that former independent MLA Paras Saklecha got himself invited by the CBI team last week. Saklecha has made a significant contribution towards exposing the Vyapam scam by raising the matter in the Assembly and also by moving the court. However, he was a disappointed man after his three-hour meeting on January 29 with the CBI officers investigating the scam. He, though, did find out that STF had kept certain Vyapam scam cases, presumably involving big-wigs, with itself through a misrepresentation in the Supreme Court and this is in the knowledge of the CBI. 

According to Saklecha, STF had registered 212 cases in connection with the Vyapam scam. But it mentioned only 185 cases when the matter was heard by Supreme Court and the apex court directed STF to hand over these cases to CBI immediately. The remaining 27 cases are still being investigated by STF. Saklecha says that CBI has expressed its inability to do anything regarding these 27 cases unless directed by the State/Central government or by a competent court.

The names of chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, his wife Sadhna Singh Chouhan and his close family members and associates are being mentioned in connection with the Vyapam scam. An FIR was registered against present Governor Ram Naresh Yadav but it was quashed on a directive of the High Court because the Constitution does not permit registration of a criminal case against a serving Governor. The Governor’s son Shailesh was accused in another Vyapam scam-related FIR. Shailesh has since died. Laxmi Kant Sharma, who was Minister of Technical Education when the scam was virtually institutionalised is on bail, as are some top functionaries of Vyapam. 

Vyapam is the acronym for Vyavsayik Pareeksha Mandal or Professional Examinations Board (PEB) in English. The modus operandi used in the scam was somewhat like this: the candidates for PMT (pre-medical test) who had worked hard and done well will be disqualified and other names (either on the recommendation of some important person or against payment of a heavy amount) will be shown as having qualified, and even put in merit list, for admission to medical colleges. After investigation, the STF has come across names of doctors working in hospitals who had not even appeared in PMT but had been declared qualified against payment of hefty sums. The young boys and girls who had worked hard for their tests were just at a loss to understand what went wrong.  

Complaints of impersonation in tests, like in other examinations, have been made for decades. Occasionally there were reports of leakage of question papers also. But such irregularities were reported only sporadically and there was no evidence of an organised racket.  Complaints of irregularities in an organised manner started after 2000 only. Between 2000 and 2012, as many as 55 FIRs were registered in various districts of the State, mostly in Indore and Bhopal. Some parties approached the courts also.

Following a hue and cry inside and outside the Assembly, chief minister Chouhan constituted STF of Madhya Pradesh police to look into the matter. The entire investigation was then handed over to STF which Chouhan probably thought would be easy to control, instead of keeping a track of what was going on where. The STF lost no time in seizing documents, hard disks and other relevant material from the Crime Branch of Indore police. It is said that no records were kept of handing over and taking over of the material from Crime Branch of Indore to the STF which gave rise to the suspicion about tampering with the evidence to save some high-ups. 

September 2018
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