SSC paper leak case: Supreme Court stays HC order for remand of ex-TDP minister Narayana

On Friday, a Bench headed by Justices Ravindra Bhat and Dipankar Dutta heard the case. Senior counsel Siddhartha Ludra, Guntur Pramod, and Guntur Prerna argued in court on behalf of Mr. Narayana.

By Newsmeter Network  Published on  6 Jan 2023 11:27 AM GMT
SSC paper leak case: Supreme Court stays HC order for remand of ex-TDP minister Narayana

New Delhi: In what has come as a relief for former TDP minister P. Narayana, the Supreme Court gave a stay on the remand order of the High Court in the SSC paper leak case. The apex court issued notices to the Andhra Pradesh government and asked them to submit their reply in four weeks.

On Friday, a Bench headed by Justices Ravindra Bhat and Dipankar Dutta heard the case. Senior counsel Siddhartha Ludra, Guntur Pramod, and Guntur Prerna argued in court on behalf of Mr. Narayana.

In April 2022, the Chittoor police arrested Mr. Narayana in the SSC paper leak case and produced him before the Chittoor magistrate. Mr. Narayana was granted bail by the Chittoor district court magistrate and released. Later, the High Court revoked the bail and ordered his surrender.

The police filed a revision petition in the sessions court. After the hearing, Mr. Narayana's bail order was cancelled and he was ordered to surrender. Arguing on behalf of Mr. Narayana, senior counsel Dammalapati Srinivas said the magistrate court granted bail considering the fact that he is not a public servant and Section 409 of the IPC (criminal breach of trust by a public servant) cannot be registered against him. After hearing both sides, Justice Raghunandan Rao issued orders extending the 30 November deadline till he pronounced his orders in the quash petition. Mr. Narayana then approached the Supreme Court.

What is the SSC paper leak case?

On 27 April 2022, a Telugu question paper from class X was allegedly leaked in the Nellepalli Zilla Parishad High school and circulated on WhatsApp. Based on a complaint by the district education officer (DEO), seven people, including vice-president Giridhar Reddy of Narayana School in Tirupati, were arrested. After a recorded statement by Giridhar Reddy, P. Narayana, former municipal administration and urban development minister and founder chairman of the Narayana Group of Institutions, was arrested on 10 May 2022 from his Hyderabad residence and brought to Chittoor.

A case was registered under the AP Public Examinations (Prevention of Malpractices and Unfair Means) Act 1997.

According to the superintendent of police, Y. Rishant Reddy, the institution received advance information on the deployment of invigilators to a particular examination center. The institution divided its students into two categories: poor and better. After luring the invigilators to help the poor students, they resorted to malpractice.

During the investigation, it was found that the group had earlier also indulged in such illegal things.

The institution took a few photos of the question paper and forwarded them outside the center. An answer key was prepared at the (institution's) head office and circulated. The answer was given to water boys or attenders through an in-charge assigned to each center. During the investigation, it was found that the institution wanted zero failure and maximum marks and rewarded employees who helped achieve better results. Also, the institution mostly focused on preparing students for physics, maths, and chemistry.

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