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Karnataka’s PSI Scam: Congress Lashes Out at BJP Govt for Trying To ‘Cover Up'

Congress demanded the resignation of Araga Jnanendra and a probe by the Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court.

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Karnataka’s PSI Scam: Congress Lashes Out at BJP Govt for Trying To ‘Cover Up'
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The Congress on Wednesday, 25 January, accused the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Karnataka of attempting to 'cover up' the Police Sub-Inspector recruitment scam in which already an additional Director General of Police (ADGP) rank officer has been arrested.

What did the grand old party say? Congress said that the prime accused in the case, RD Patil, who surrended on Monday, 23 January, has written to the Lokayukta alleging that the investigating officer of the scam case had demanded Rs 3 crore to close the case. In his letter, Patil also claimed that Rs 76 lakh has already been paid.

What has Congress demanded? Noting that the letter to the Lokayukta is in public domain, Congress National General Secretary and Karnataka In Charge Randeep Singh Surjewala demanded the resignation of Karnataka Home Minister Araga Jnanendra and a probe by the Chief Justice of the Karnataka High Court into the scam.

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Surjewala attakcs BJP government: The Congress spokesperson said:

“So what's happening under the nose of Bommai and Home Minister Araga Jnanendra? Firstly, they denied the PSI scam, then they don't investigate the scam, after state-wide massive protests when the investigation happens, nearly 100 people are arrested.”

What is the scam? A recruitment examination was held in October 2021 for the appointment of 545 Police Sub-Inspectors (PSI). This was attended by 54,041 candidates across 93 centres in Karnataka. While the results were announced in January 2022, a few students raised objections citing irregularities in the awarding of marks.

Soon, the matter reached the Karnataka Legislative Assembly.

A week later, an OMR (Optical Mark Reading) answer-sheet of one Veeresh got leaked. As per the initial investigation, it was revealed that Veeresh had attended only 21 questions out of 130, but secured seventh rank in the examination. It was believed that Veeresh paid off someone to get his rank altered.

It is alleged that over 300 candidates had paid around Rs 80 lakhs as bribe to officials for the post.

The impact: With the ongoing campaigning for the Karnataka Assembly elections, after the 40 percent commission allegations, the new developments in the PSI scam seem to have put the Bommai-led government on the back foot.

Click here to read The Quint's explainer on the PSI scam.

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Topics:  BJP   Congress   Bengaluru 

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