After India Today exposes UP cheating racket, FIR against 359 people, 57 centers debarred

India Today's investigative teams filmed associates scaling walls to throwing paper balls inside examination rooms, with police looking the other way.

The Uttar Pradesh government has taken note of India Today's report of cheating in Uttar Pradesh and so has the Centre.

A FIR has been registered against 111 examination center managers, 178 invigilators and over 70 students.

Exams at more than 54 centres have been cancelled across Uttar Pradesh and 57 centers have debarred from holding examinations.

The decision was taken after Dinesh Sharma held a video conference with district school superintendents late last evening.

In the middle of its board-exam season, Uttar Pradesh is hit hard by mass copying. A state-wide investigation by India Today has caught the epidemic on camera.

In a stark evidence of UP's crumbling education system, the probe has unearthed a shady nexus of parents, touts and teachers aiding cheating on school exams.

From Mathura, Deoria, Ballia, Mainpuri to Meerut, students as young as 10th graders were seen using unfair means to achieve good marks in their current pressure-packed board exams, helped as they were by their relatives and a well-oiled cheating mafia, the investigation found.

At a number of test centres in UP, India Today's investigative teams filmed associates scaling walls to throwing paper balls inside examination rooms, with police looking the other way.

At Mathura's Sardar Patel School, gangs of touts sitting outside received copies of Monday's question paper on their smartphones within seconds of its distribution inside, the probe observed. Answers were relayed back to the candidates after quick surfing of key books.

India Today's investigative reporters found how a racket of school and government administrators was apparently capitalising on the desperation for higher education.

At his home in Meerut, Premchand Lodhi, principal of the city's Rani Avantibai Inter-College, explained the modus operandi behind the rampant cheating.

Bribes, he told India Today's undercover reporters, fix everything and anything - from test centres to sending subject experts right there to the examination room. "It will cost around Rs 3 to 4 lakh for getting a (test) centre of your choice. We'll say we want a centre at xyz location. They will have everything fixed," Lodhi said, sitting on a sofa.

Sushil Kumar Sharma, founder of Meerut's KVSS Vidyapeeth Senior Secondary School, also accepted that he manipulated allocation of test centres.

Commenting on the India Today investigation, Dinesh Sharma, Deputy CM, UP had said that he will act against the officials involved in cheating. "Officials involved in cheating will be jailed. We will strike at the root cause of cheating, " he added. Sharma said, "Cheating won't be tolerated at any cost. Have asked police to conduct anti-cheating raids."

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India Today Expose: How Uttar Pradesh's money-for-marks mafia works

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By book or by crook: India Today investigation exposes exam cheats of UP