The Mumbai University (MU) has received 136 fake degree cases in just four months of the academic year 2015-16, surpassing the number of similar cases reported in the last three years.
In its reply to an RTI query, the Marks and Certificates Unit of Examination section of the varsity stated that the number of such cases jumped to 136 in the first four months of this (academic) year compared to 2012-13 (252 cases), 2013-14 (242 cases) and 2014-15 (274 cases).
The reply to the query, filed by a Pune-based activist Vihar Durve, has also revealed that number of such cases per month has gone up to 34 as against 21 in 2012-13. These cases of fake degrees were reported to MU by means of complaints filed with police, correspondence, letters and various e-mails from different offices, courts, police departments, other universities and citizens between 2012 and 2015 so far.
All the cases have been further reported to Bandra Kurla police station for further action, stated the reply. "This rising trend of procuring fake degrees is adopted not only by politicians, but also in the recruitment of lower grade appointments," Durve said.
He alleged that despite 'rampant' procurement of fake degrees and knowledge of such incidents, neither ministers nor education officers have taken corrective steps to check the menace.
Prominent politicians who are under cloud over fake educational qualifications are Union HRD minister Smriti Irani, Maharashtra education minister Vinod Tawde, his cabinet colleague and water supply minister Babanrao Lonikar and former Delhi Law minister Jitendra Tomar.