Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Andhra film producer behind Chandigarh PG medical entrance scam

The Central Bureau of Investigation, probing the hi-tech mass copying racket in the entrance examination for admission into the prestigious Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER ), Chandigarh, have found the roots of the scam in the Telugu film industry as well.

The CBI officials in Chandigarh have found that Dr Kota Gangadhar Reddy, one of the kingpins in the racket - has turned out to be a Telugu film producer. He launched his own film production company - Kota Film Corporation (KFC). Early this year, he produced a high-voltage action film in Telugu - "Nandeeshwarudu," starring Nandamuri Taraka Ratna, grand-son of Telugu Desam Party founder-president and former Andhra Pradesh chief minister N T Rama Rao, but the film failed to click at the box office.

The CBI sleuths, who had picked up Gangadhar from Hotel Ashoka Pataliputra in Patna as part of a synchronised operation on November 10, produced him in a special court in Chandigarh on Monday. "We brought him to Chandigarh on a transit warrant and are interrogating him to find out the extent of network of his racket," CBI superintendent of police Vineet Brijlal told MAIL TODAY from Chandigarh.

The CBI authorities are now probing as to whether Gangadhar had used the scam money in producing films. "He seems to have made quite a big money running into a few crores through medical exam scam, not only in Chandigarh but in other parts of the country as well. We are probing whether he has been spending the same money in making films," the CBI official said.

According to the official, Gangadhar is the key conspirator in the hi-tech mass copying racket along with P Gurivi Reddy who had executed the racket. While Gangadhar had done his Master of Surgery in Orthopaedics, Gurivi Reddy had completed MBBS before entering into the mass copying racket using hi-tech electronic gadgets.

"According to preliminary investigations, the main activity of Gangadhar was to find out the students, to say precisely clients, who required admission into the PGIMER and arrange the experts to solve the question paper. On the other hand, Gurivi Reddy's job was to provide sophisticated equipment like pen-scanner, micro-earphones with blue tooth facility and wireless ear plugs to the students, who had hidden them in convenient places like undergarments, collars and hair bands," Vineet said.

Interestingly, seven girls - G Padmaja, G Sahaja, C Namitha, Maritha, Sunitha, Aruna and Krishna, who were arrested from the examination centres in Chandigarh on November 10, were not actually MBBS students appearing for PG medical entrance test. "Our investigations revealed that they were not medical students, but were part of the Gangadhar-Gurivi Reddy racket. The actual beneficiary clients were different and all of them are supposed to be from Andhra Pradesh. We could identify some of them and we would disclose their names once the investigation was completed," the CBI official said.

According to him, the job of the girls who were picked up from the examination hall was to leak the question paper to their "bosses" sitting in the control room using hi-tech gadgets. "They would scan the question paper using the specially designed pen, which had the facility to transmit the same to Gurivi Reddy and Gangadhar sitting in the control room in Chandigarh and Patna. The bosses in turn would send the scanned paper to "experts," who would find out the answers and send them back to the "control room." From there, the answers would be read out to the clients in the examination hall using blue tooth facility," the official said.

Vineet said the exact number of beneficiaries of the mass copying racket was not immediately known, but it would not exceed 40 as there were only 40 PG medical seats in the Chandigarh College. "Assuming that at least half of them could be genuine, the students involved in the racket could be around 20," he said.

Sources said one of the beneficiaries - Krishna Reddy who had done his MBBS from a private medical college in Nellore, had turned approved for the CBI and his statement had been recorded on Monday. Based on his confession, the CBI sleuths are identifying the other beneficiaries, sources said.

The PGIMER authorities have already cancelled the entire entrance examination and have decided to hold it afresh in December.




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