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Assam Paper Leak: Masterminds arrested as protests continue | Latest Updates

Assam Paper Leak: Police on Friday informed that two masterminds have been arrested in the Assam board class 10 question paper leak matter.

Bhagya Luxmi Edited By: Bhagya Luxmi @Bhagya_Luxmi Guwahati Published on: March 17, 2023 23:13 IST
Assam Paper Leak, Assam Paper Leak matter, Assam Paper Leak update, Modern Indian Language, Assam
Image Source : PIXABAY Assam Paper Leak: Masterminds arrested as protests continue | Latest Updates

Assam Paper Leak: Protest erupted as the second test of the Assam board-conducted Class 10 exam was cancelled within a week following the leak of the question paper. Students on Friday staged protests across the state. A Police official today informed that two masterminds have been arrested in the question paper leak case. As per the police, two teachers were identified as masterminds in the before-mentioned case. 

Protest across the state

With the latest arrests, the total number of people apprehended has reached 31, even as the issue rocked the state assembly and protests continued in different parts of the state, including by examinees. "The two main accused, Pranab Dutta and Kumud Rajkhowa, have been arrested. They are currently in Lakhimpur, where they were apprehended," Assam Police spokesperson Prasanta Kumar Bhuyan told PTI.

"As informed by CID, the total arrests now are at 31," he added. Two instances of question paper leak of class 10 exams conducted by Board of Secondary Education, Assam, (SEBA) has come to light, leading to cancellation of both the tests. The general science exam, scheduled for Monday, was cancelled the night before, while the Modern Indian Language (MIL) and English papers, slated for Saturday, were declared cancelled by SEBA on Thursday night.

Rescheduled exam dates 

The first exam that was cancelled will now be held on March 30, while the other on April 1. Director General of Police (DGP) G P Singh, addressing a press conference here, said the CID, which is investigating the case, has been able to establish the chain of events leading to the leak of the question papers and circulation.

"We have enough physical evidence with us in the case," he said. Singh said the headteacher and the centre in-charge of Luhit Khabalu High School of Majuli, Pranab Dutta, is one of the main accused and was detained from the island district on Thursday. The other mastermind, Kumud Rajkhowa, a teacher of Daflakata High School in Lakhimpur, surrendered in the afternoon and both Dutta and Rajkhowa were subsequently arrested, police spokesperson Bhuyan said.

Burnt question papers were sent for examination 

Singh also said remnants of burnt question papers have been recovered from the house of Dutta, and those were sent for forensic examination. He added that the CID is gathering more technical evidence, like details of social media interactions and monetary transactions through e-wallets.

On juveniles being apprehended, the DGP said it was a "considered decision" as without arresting them the chain of events could not have been established in 24-38 hours of the matter coming to fore. The question paper leak issue was raised in the assembly by the opposition, demanding a statement from the government, which rejected the call, leading to noisy scenes. Immediately after the Question Hour, Leader of Opposition Debabrata Saikia raised the matter in the House and asked the government to come out with a statement.

"Yesterday again, one more paper was leaked. So far, the government has said General Science and Assamese papers have been leaked. There are allegations that Mathematics and English papers were leaked as well. Have all papers been leaked?" he asked. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pijush Hazarika condemned the leak and said the mastermind has been nabbed within three days.

"We are also taking steps so that such incidents never recur in the future. The CM has already made a statement in the assembly yesterday. I do not think there is a need to give any more statements," he added. When Congress MLA Kamalakhya Dey Purkayastha pointed out that the CM has accepted the failure of the government, Hazarika and other members of the treasury opposed the statement, leading to a verbal duel between Purkayastha and Hazarika.

(with inputs from PTI)

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