The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of police yesterday pressed charges against 125 people, including 87 students of Dhaka University, in a case filed over their alleged involvement in question leaks and cheating their way into the university.
Senior Assistant Superintendent of Police of CID Sumon Kumar Das, also the investigation officer of the case, submitted the charge sheet before a Dhaka Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Court.
Police submitted the charge sheet following a year and half long investigation in a case filed with Shahbagh Police Station under the Public Examinations Law and the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Act on October 20, 2017.
The CID arrested 47 of the 125 suspects, including the alleged mastermind Alip Kumar Biswas, a suspended assistant director of Bangladesh Krira Shikkha Protisthan (BKSP). Three more government officials and 21 DU students were among the arrestees, according to the CID.
Most of the suspects, including Alip, are now on bail.
Forty-six of them have already given their confessional statements before a magistrate.
The 78 others accused remain absconding. One of them is a teenager who will be prosecuted in juvenile court.
The CID also prayed to the court to allow the lawmen to submit a supplementary charge sheet against 89 more DU students, who passed the university’s admission tests by cheating with the help of the other accused.
“A supplementary charge sheet will be submitted after we verify their names and addresses,” said Molla Nazrul Islam, special superintendent of the CID.
CID sources said a total of 2,714 pages of documents, including 1,361 pages of judicial docket, was submitted to the court.
Police tracked down the gang members following a series of arrests since October 2017, when investigators raided two DU dormitories hours before the “Gha” unit admission test.
In its very first raid in the two dormitories on October 20, the CID arrested two BCL leaders -- Mohiuddin Rana, an assistant secretary of the BCL central committee, and Abdullah Al Mamun, theatre and debate affairs secretary of the BCL’s Amar Ekushey Hall unit.
In January last year, the DU authorities expelled 15 students, including the two BCL leaders, over their involvement in leaking question papers and cheating in the admission tests.
After further investigation, the CID found that the questions were mainly leaked in two ways: from the printing press the night before the exams and through digital devices minutes before the tests started.
Job or admission seekers were given the answers via tiny ear-pieces a few minutes into the exams.
The other ringleaders are suspended Janata Bank senior officer Hafizur Rahman Hafiz, Assistant Administrative Officer of Bangladesh Agricultural Development Corporation Mostafa Kamal, businessman Masudur Rahman Tajul, and job seeker Ibrahim Molla, said the CID.
Police also filed a money laundering case against eight, including Hafizur and Ibrahim, with Uttara West Police Station this January.
Nazrul said the CID would seek a court order to seize the suspects’ wealth.
In 2017, this gang leaked question papers of DU’s “Gha” unit admission test from a printing press in the capital’s Indira Road.
Some of the gang members, led by Natore District Sports Officer Rakibul Hasan, used to leak questions hours before the admission tests, they mentioned.
In the last five to six years, this organised gang struck deals with government job aspirants and public university admission seekers in exchange for hefty sums and helped many cheat their ways into universities and government offices.
Contacted yesterday, DU Vice Chancellor Prof Akhtaruzzaman said, “I heard that the CID have submitted the charge sheet. We are waiting for them to come. If we get it [the list of DU students involved], we will take action.”
Asked about the expulsion of 15 students in this connection and whether similar action will be taken against the rest, the he said, “Yes…whenever we get proof of any student’s involvement in any dishonest activities, action will be taken as per university rules.”