LUCKNOW, April 2 (PTI): Police on Saturday arrested the manager of a private college in connection with the Class 12 English exam question paper leak case, taking the total number of arrests to 35.
Deputy superintendent of police, Rasda, Shivnarayan Vaishya identified the arrested man Bhanu Pratap Singh.
“He is accused of sharing the leaked question paper. His role in leaking the question paper is also being looked into,” the DSP said.
Meanwhile, local mediapersons have been staging protests against the police and the district administration condemning the arrests of three journalists – Ajit Ojha, Digvijay Singh and Manoj Gupta — in connection with the case.
When asked, superintendent of police, Ballia, Raj Karan Nayyar told PTI, “The arrests of all the accused have been made based on the FIRs lodged in the case and by following due legal process. Anyone who doesn’t agree with the action is free to take legal recourse.”
He, however, declined to reveal any information on the evidence the police have gathered against the journalists.
Digvijay Singh, one of the arrested journalists, is seen in a viral video raising slogans against the district officials, saying that he is being “hounded” by the administration for reporting the paper leak.
“I reported the incident based on a leaked question paper I got from my sources. The use of unfair means is rampant in the district. If I have reported that the question paper is leaked, the administration must find out from where it is leaked. Instead, the officials are asking me about it,” Singh is heard telling media persons in the video.
In response to this video, police in Uttar Pradesh’s Ballia have issued a clarification on Twitter saying, “The said person has been arrested and sent to jail based on the evidence recovered during the investigation…”
District Magistrate of Ballia Indra Vikram Singh declined to comment on their arrests.
The English examination was cancelled in 24 districts on Wednesday after the paper was leaked, prompting chief minister Yogi Adityanath to order invoking the stringent National Security Act in the case.
The Special Task Force of the Uttar Pradesh Police is investigating the matter, while the state’s education department has enforced a strict regulatory regime for strong rooms stocking papers across the state, following the Wednesday incident.