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Poona College exam scam tip of iceberg, say police

Police investigations have revealed that the university revaluation and the exam proxy scams unearthed recently in Poona College are just the tip of the iceberg.

The police feel one of the arrested men, Gaus Shabbir Shaikh, was just a small scamster and officials said there were several education mafias running such rackets on the premises of Poona College. A junior clerk from the college, Sameer Shaikh, was also arrested by the Cantonment police a few days ago for the revaluation scam.


Bit player: Gaus Shabbir Shaikh, who was arrested last week

The police said they had identified some employees of the examination department of the University of Pune and that of Poona College who were hand in glove in the scams.

Some people associated with the college said that a brother of a former corporator was running the entire racket of examination-related malpractices in Poona College and it was he who was using several people like Gaus to execute things like sending bright students to write papers for others and passing failed students with the help of some employees of Poona College and the exam department of the UoP.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone II) Ramnath Pokle said: “Gaus is the lowest link in the chain and there are several others who have been executing the scam from behind the scenes, but it is difficult to divulge their names at this stage as the investigation is still on and the police are trying to break the nexus among the outside racketeers, internal staff of Poona College and some employees of the examination department of the UoP.”

A police officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that the brother of the former corporator had been summoned for investigations and was grilled for several hours at the Cantonment police station.

UoP staff detained
Officials of the police station have detained two people from University of Pune in connection with the case and said there were three more people from Poona College who were involved and would be picked up soon.

A Poona College staffer, who requested anonymity, said that some people from outside the college were trying to spread fear in the minds of teaching and non-teaching staff and the employees were scared of these people as they were very powerful. He said that these people often sought sexual favours from girl students from other states and countries in exchange for doing exam-related favours. 

Poona College Principal G M Nazuruddin said: “There are a lot of flaws in the system in the college and some people from outside try to take advantage of this, but we are helpless to act against them as no one comes forward to complain.” He said that he had instructed teachers and non-teaching staff to not have any dealings with unscrupulous people. 

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