BSEB chief confesses to Rs. 20 lakh bribe

Patna: Former Bihar School Examination Board (BSEB) chairman Lalkeshwar Prasad Singh confessed to having taken Rs 20 lakh from a cheating racket kingpin to help each unworthy student become a topper, police said on Wednesday.

Singh also took Rs 4 lakh for granting affiliation to each shady intermediate college, police said. Singh and his ex-MLA and ex-professor wife Usha Sinha were sent in a three-day police custody on Wednesday.

Patna SSP Manu Maharaaj said Singh, during his tenure as BSEB head, granted affiliation to over 100 colleges. Both were arrested from Varanasi on Monday for their alleged involvement in the cheating racket, allegedly headed by now-jailed college principal Bachcha Roy, that helped students top this year’s BSEB class XII exam.

Roy also paid on the behalf of parents, as government grants to his college in Vaishali district, where many fake toppers wrote their papers, increased, police said. The scam came to light on May 30 when two toppers, Ruby Rai and Saurabh Shreshta, looked clueless during a media interview about the subjects they had excelled in. “Police may include in the FIR the name of Rajiv Kumar Prasad Ranjan, director of Bihar Higher Secondary Education. He was a member of the board which granted affiliation to these colleges,” the SSP said.

Police said Singh engaged his son-in-law Vivek Kumar, son of former Magadh University vice-chancellor Arun Kumar, in printing confidential documents of the BSEB. “Police on Wednesday raided Arun Kumar’s house in Patna but he was not found there,” the SSP said.

Sinha was yet to be quizzed, the SSP said. She was on Thursday dropped by the JD (U) and removed from a Patna college where she worked in violation of rules and court orders.