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2 Munnabhais Arrested In PGI After Tribune Sting Over Seats For Sale

Chandigarh, Sep 28 : The CBI on Tuesday  arrested two resident doctors at Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research here for allegedly fraudulently securing admission in post-graduate courses and searched the premises of
PTI September 28, 2010 21:37 IST
Chandigarh, Sep 28 : The CBI on Tuesday  arrested two resident doctors at Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research here for allegedly fraudulently securing admission in post-graduate courses and searched the premises of the mastermind of an admission racket in Mumbai. This followed the publication of a sting operation in Tuesday's edition of The Tribune. 

In a related development, the Institute has started verification of all 500 resident doctors who joined its post graduate courses in the last two years following media reports that seats were secured through impersonation and other forms of irregularities with the help of agents operating from Mumbai and New Delhi. 

According to a CBI release, the investigation agency arrested two doctors pursuing their post-graduation courses at PGIMER following a case registered against them and others. It was alleged that these two doctors secured admission in the courses in PGIMER, Chandigarh, on the basis of impersonation and manipulation, the release said.

They obtained admission through an organized racket assuring admissions in various private and government medical colleges by charging amount running into lakhs of rupees.

In such cases, some brilliant students, part of the organized racket, appeared in the entrance examination by impersonating the aspiring candidates and qualified the same on behalf of candidates, the release said. 

Searches were conducted at the premises of one of the masterminds of the organized racket in Mumbai in order to establish further links of the racket assuring and procuring admissions by impersonation, forgery and manipulation. Documents and other material have been recovered during the raid, the release said. 

The internal inquiry in PGIMER is being conducted by the Registrar and the Heads of Departments, Institute sources told PTI here this evening. The agents allegedly used impersonators to sit on behalf of the applicants and also assured confirmed admission for post graduate courses in the Institute. The agents, who were stated to be running coaching centres, had allegedly charged large amount of money from the applicants to get them admitted to the Institute. 

The inquiry would cover about 500 resident doctors who have joined various departments, including medicine, radiology, orthopedics and ENT during the last two years by taking the entrance examination. PTI

"We have started verifying credentials of all the resident doctors who have joined in the last two years. We are extending full cooperation to all the investigative agencies involved," an official statement of the PGIMER said. Some resident doctors who had got admission in the recent past are also to be questioned in connection with the probe, the sources said. PTI 

The Tribune, Chandigarh, has conducted a sting operation on an agent who claims to have got students admitted to MBBS and MD courses in PGIMER (Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research) on payments  ranging from Rs  80 lakh to Rs 1.25 crore.

The newspaper's team met two such doctors presently pursuing MD courses in PGI and both of them admitted off the record that the agent helped them. The agent had given the names of these two doctors to vouch for his credibility.

Posing as parents, the newspaper team  met one doctor, who opened up on being told about the agent. The doctor confirmed that the agent arranges persons who impersonate for candidates in entrance tests. 

The other doctor, busy in the emergency ward, explained why he chose to come through the agent. He said he had appeared in the test but could not clear it and then decided to get the services of the agent, who, he said, was effective. The spokesperson for PGI Manju Wadwalkar said the charges would be looked into at the highest level.

The Tribune report says this impersonation racket was not only confined to PGI, but also being run for AIIMS and a reputed Mumbai college. Following are some of the excerpts from the conversation the Tribune team had with the agent: 

Tribune Team:  ****ji, as suggested by you we have met those two persons in the PGI. Dr. **** told us that we could rely on you for admission. He told us that most of the money has to be given only after the work was done. But the other doctor *** seemed to be a little hesitant in talking to us.

Agent: They are a little scared of talking about this. Had you told me about your visit, I would have talked to them. But now are you sure that we deliver what we claim?

TT: Yes, yes, we are very satisfied. Dr ***** told us we can trust you completely. I told you all this to my relative Mrs Sharma (imaginary name) whose son wants admission in the PGI. He has finished his internship and had appeared for the PGI entrance test in December but could not clear it. They are interested.

Agent: The next exam is in November-December. We will do the work then.

TT: How do we go about it? What is the procedure?

Agent: What branch he wants?

TT: Any branch will do. The child has appeared in the test two-three times. Now he is desperate. It's an NRI family and money is not a problem.

Agent: Any clinical branch will do? Like radiology, orthopaedics, ENT?

TT: Any branch will do.

Agent: The work would be done. We take 100 per cent guarantee. If you want a good branch like paediatrics, we will charge around Rs 80 lakh. In case of radiology, the rate would be Rs 1.25 crore.

TT: The doctors were also telling us that there is no need for the child to study as someone else would appear in the test. The child finished his MBBS three years ago and has not touched a book ever since.

Agent: You need not worry. We will get the work done.

TT: Will the exam take place in PGI or at some other place?

Agent: You don't take any tension. You leave all that to us. Your work will be done.

TT: I hope there is nothing to fear? Does the exam take place in the PGI?

Agent: The exam takes place in Chandigarh. You relax. We will manage everything.

TT: How much money has to be given initially?

Agent: Initially, you will have to pay at least Rs 10 to Rs 15 lakh.

TT: How do we make that payment? Do we meet someone here?

Agent: No, you will have to come to us and give the payment to us.

TT: OK. I will pass on this information to Mrs Sharma. I will also give her your number. She will get in touch with you.

Agent: Yes. Yes she can talk to us anytime. She should give your reference. Do not take any tension. Consider the work as done.

TT: We believe you. One more thing…does the initial amount remains same for the radiology branch?

Agent: No, for radiology, the initial amount is more, It will be Rs 20 lakh.

TT: OK, I will convey this to Mrs Sharma. Dr**** was also telling us that you can also manage admissions in ***** (a medical institute in Delhi)?

Agent: We can get admission done everywhere.

TT: What is the rate for admissions at ***** (Delhi institute)?

Agent: The rates are the same everywhere. Wherever you want, we can get the admission. The first exam that is approaching is in Nov-Dec of the PGI and ***** (Delhi institute). We will try these. If you still want admission through the “All India….”, the exam is is January. Where has the child done his MBBS from?

TT: ********* Medical College Ludhiana. There also we had got him admitted on a paid seat.

Agent: The first two options are the PGI and the *****(Delhi institute). The forms are also out. Your work will be done. We have already given the proof of our efficiency. Wherever you go, you will find our children. Our children are also in ***** College, Mumbai.

TT: Which college in Mumbai?

Agent: In Mumbai, the admissions are done through the All India entrance test. We have recently got the admission of one Dr **** from Chandigarh to this college in Mumbai in paediatrics.

TT: The doctors whom we met said there was no need to pay the entire amount in advance.

Agent:  That is how we operate. We don't take the entire amount beforehand. We only take a token advance. And the day your child gets the admission, you have to pay the rest of the amount.

TT: Can we pay the rest of the amount in cash?

Agent: Yes. You can pay in cash also. In case of cash, I will tell you whom to get in touch with.

TT: Will we have to go to Delhi to make the cash payment?

Agent: When you have to make the  payment tell me. You can pay in Chandigarh or even in Ludhiana.

TT: OK. In any case, the payment has to be done by Mrs Sharma. Since they are NRIs, perhaps they will liketo pay by cheque.

Agent: Cash or cheque, we don't have any problems. It is totally a transparent deal. Only it should not be leaked out too much.

TT: Do we have to pay anything to any one in the PGI?

Agent: No payment has to be given to the PGI. All the payment has to be made directly to me after the work is done.