CET Scam: HC dismisses Ex-BOPEE Chairman’s plea on suspension of sentence
STATE TIMES NEWS
SRINAGAR: Justice M.K Hanjura on Wednesday dismissed application filed by Mustaq Ahmed Peer, Ex-Chairman BOPEE who was convicted by the Special Judge Anticorruption in CET Scam 2012, seeking suspension of sentence.
According to the prosecution story, it came to be noticed, during the preliminary verification, that the results of the JKCET, 2012 had surprised a number of aspirants for the reasons that a good number of candidates from a particular district with insignificant merit in the qualifying examinations had not only qualified the entrance examination but had also made it to the top ranks in the select list.
The notion got further strengthened when most of those top-ranking candidates in the JKCET- 2012, failed in the internal session examinations and were not allowed to sit in the 1st year of the MBBS examination by their respective colleges.
During the course of preliminary verification, one of the successful candidates in the JKCET- 2012, namely Naveed Ahmed Bhat, upon questioning could not even spell correctly the word ‘Chemistry’. It further came to the fore that one of the accused persons, namely Farooq Ahmad Itoo (turned to be an approver), who had been running a Computer Centre under the name and style of ‘M/S Info-tech Computers at Bijbehara’, was a close associate of accused namely Mushtaq Ahmad Peer i.e. the applicant/ appellant herein, who had made the question papers of the JKCET–2012 available to some candidates of a particular area in advance through his associates, touts, and parents of the aspirants against huge monetary considerations.
Upon receipt of the report of the preliminary verification, the IGP Crime, ordered the registration of the FIR and holding of a detailed investigation. It led to the registration of the FIR 24/13 on September 24, 2013, for the commission of the offences punishable under Sections 420 and 120-B of the RPC and 5(1)(d) read with 5(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act and the investigation was entrusted to a specially constituted team of Officers, headed by Dy.SP Bashir Ahmad Dar.
During the course of the investigation, what got revealed is that the approver, Farooq Ahmad Itoo, came in contact with Mushtaq Ahmad Peer in the year 2001 when the latter was Head of the Department of Computer Sciences, University of Kashmir and developed friendly relations with him in the passage of time. Later on, when Mushtaq Ahmad Peer was posted as the Chairman BOPEE in February, 2008, a criminal conspiracy came to be hatched by Mushtaq Ahmad Peer and the approver, somewhere in March-April, 2012, when Mushtaq Ahmad Peer took the charge of the Controller Examination from Dr. Gopal Gupta on February 29, 2012 upon latter’s superannuation. Under this well-knit conspiracy, Mushtaq Ahmad Peer agreed to provide the copies of the question papers together with answer keys etc. to the approver in lieu of the payment of Rs. 60 lakh for further providing it to the potential candidates aspiring for admission to MBBS in advance of the scheduled date of the examination.
There after approver Farooq Ahmad Itoo contacted his friend and co-accused Sajjad Hussain Bhat and struck a deal for providing him the papers in advance upon a consideration of Rs.30 lakh. In the process, the approver made direct deals with nine candidates against payments of varied amounts of consideration.
After hearing both the sides, Justice Hanjura observed that it is not a fit case where the judgment dated April 25, 2018, as passed by the Court of Special Judge Anti-Corruption, Kashmir, Srinagar, in case bearing FIR No. 24/2013, of Crime Branch, Srinagar, for the commission of offences punishable under Sections 420, 406, 201, 120-B of the RPC read with Section 5(1)(d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, can be stayed and the sentence recorded against the applicant/ appellant suspended.
With these observations, Justice Hanjura ordered that the application of the applicant/appellant, being MP No.01/2018, seeking suspension of sentence is found to be devoid of any merit and, as a sequel thereto, the same is dismissed.