All 15 accused get bail as CBI fails to submit chargesheet

Three months after the CBI had arrested a gang of 15 people who had allegedly leaked question papers of the MD/MS examination of Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, all the accused secured bail on Monday as the agency failed to submit a chargesheet in the stipulated time period.

The court of Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Rajnish K Sharma granted bail to all the accused, including kingpin Gurivi Reddy and co-conspirator Dr Gangadhar Reddy, on a condition of depositing a surety of Rs 1 lakh each.

Three accused, P Siddhartha, N Jagdeesh and P Bharath Chand, furnished the bonds with the surety of Rs 1 lakh each and were released on Monday.

The bail application was moved by the counsel for the accused since 90 days had passed after the arrest of the accused from the hotels in the city and the dummy candidates from four of the examination centres. Earlier, many failed attempts were made by the accused in the court of the CJM and the CBI special court to get bail.

CBI Deputy Inspector General Mahesh Aggarwal said, "The accused are entitled to get bail and it is a provision for them. In this case, the investigation is quiet voluminous as we have to acquire records from various states and have to wait for certain forensic reports. Only after that can we submit a chargesheet."

Advocate N K Nanda said, "According to the gravity of the offence, a time period is decided in which the investigating agency is supposed to submit the chargesheet. If the period expires and the agency fails to put up the challan, all the accused are entitled to get bail."

The Case

On November 9 last year, the CBI had received a complaint regarding the alleged cheating gang. On November 10, the agency conducted raids on all the 11centres where the exam was being conducted. Also, some hotels in the city were raided. The CBI arrested a total of 15 people, including seven dummy candidates, from four centres who were leaking the question papers and eight people from the hotels who had been in the supporting team of kingpin Gurivi Reddy, who himself was also arrested from one of the hotels. On November 12, Dr Gangadhar Reddy who was providing answers to the question papers being leaked by the dummy candidates was arrested and brought to Chandigarh from Patna.

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