Patna: After rampant cheating in Bihar's matriculation examinations made headlines, at least 1,000 people were arrested in the state as some other person impersonated them during the written examination and physical test for recruitment of police constables, a top police officer said on Sunday.
So far 1,068 candidates, out of those who cleared the written examinations held last year and were to take the physical eligibility test, have been arrested over the last two weeks during the screening of their documents.
Around 52,000 candidates were selected for the screening of documents at Patliputra Sports Complex here in the state capital.
"Our officials discovered that other persons appeared in the written tests in place of the arrested candidates. This was done by transposing or morphing photographs used in the examination applications, forging signatures, using fake certificates and other papers," said Bihar Director General of Police (DGP) P K Thakur.
The DGP said a majority of the candidates, on whose behalf the impersonators took the exam, were detected when the officials matched their fingerprints and signatures with those obtained during written examinations. Some even hired others to undertake physical eligibility tests in their place.
"The screening has just started, and we intend to complete it along with physical eligibility tests till the end of April to proceed ahead with the recruitment of constables.
"We have asked our officials to take utmost care in examining the documents. Those who have taken recourse to unfair means will be caught and strict action will be taken against them," Thakur added.
As reports filtered in that organised syndicates were facilitating impersonation, forgery and cheating in lieu of money ranging anywhere between Rs 50,000 and Rs 1 lakh, the DGP pointed out that investigation has already been started to find out more about the gangs involved.
"Once the recruitment process get over, the probe will go ahead full-fledged to discover the exact modus operandi of the gangs or persons involved in such sordid affair. They will not be spared," he said.
Meanwhile, the arrested youths have been produced before court and forwarded to jail. Police officials are considering this to be just the tip of the iceberg, and expect more arrests in the coming days.