Two arrested for offering engineering seats for cash in Jadavpur University
Two men who were allegedly offering engineering seats at Jadavpur University in exchange for money on the campus were arrested based on a complaint lodged by the university authorities.
Police said they have arrested Suraj Mukherjee, 26, of Domjur (town in Howrah district), and Souvik Mandal, 25, of Balagarh (in Hooghly district), based on a complaint from Jadavpur University pro-vice-chancellor, administration, Samantak Das.
“According to the complaint, the accused duo tried to induce candidates by offering them admission in an engineering course at Jadavpur University. Current JU students identified the accused and informed the university authorities,” said deputy commissioner (south suburban) Rashid Munir Khan.
“Two youths who had entered the campus were trying to influence candidates and their guardians regarding the admission process and offering seats for cash,” said an officer of Jadavpur police station.
The incident was reported on Wednesday afternoon when the university was holding spot counselling to fill seats that remained vacant in first-year BTech programmes after the state JEE board’s centralised counselling.
The officer said they also received a complaint from the Trinamul students’ wing at JU alleging that the accused duo had tried to introduce themselves as members of the Trinamul Chhatra Parishad.
An official of the university said Trinamul students’ wing was dragged into the matter after the students’ wing of the faculty of engineering and technology (Fetsu) alleged that two research scholars who are TMCP supporters were involved with the accused two.
The police said they would start a case under IPC sections related to attempt to cheat and criminal conspiracy against the duo.
Wednesday was the last day of JU’s five-day independent counselling to fill 437 out of 1,253 BTech seats.
The two men were spotted in front of Gandhi Bhavan — the counselling venue — approaching those waiting to take part in the counselling process with offers of fixing admission in lieu of money, alleged a JU official.
As chaos broke out outside Gandhi Bhavan, two JU teachers, Partha Pratim Roy and Rajeshwyar Sinha, intervened. The accused were taken to pro-VC Das’s office.
Sanjib Pramanik, the president of the Trinamul students’ wing, said: “Our supporters are in no way involved with those who have been arrested. Fetsu has raised baseless allegations. Let the police find out whether those arrested are involved in running an admission racket on the campus.”
Aritra Majumder, the chairperson of Fetsu said: “We have approached the authorities to investigate the involvement of the two TMCP supporters with the arrested men.”
Similar allegations were raised during spot counselling for BTech seats in 2018, he said.
The chaos, however, did not disrupt the counselling process, which ended with six seats remaining vacant.