The investigative agency said on Friday, Jun 18 that it has arrested eight people in connection with the multi-crore recruitment scam. Those held include Vivek Bhardwaj Sharma, son of SM Sharma, Chairman of Railway Recruitment Board (RRB), Mumbai, the then Additional Divisional Railway Manager(ADRM), Raipur AK Jagannatham, his son Srujan and a Raipur-based agent.
"CBI has unearthed Railway recruitment scam by conducting simultaneous raids at Mumbai, Bangalore, Raipur, Kolkata and Hyderabad. This scam relates to the examinations of Assistant Loco Pilot and Assistant Station Master. It is estimated that the scam runs into several crores of rupees," CBI spokesperson Harsh Bhal said here.
"The then ADRM, Raipur in connivance with the officials of RRB, Mumbai could secure a copy of the question paper before the examination date and provided the same to several aspirants," he added.
The CBI found that the aspiring candidates had to pay up to Rs 3.5 lakh and surrender their original certificates to Jagannathan to get the question paper one day before the exam. The candidates' ceritficates were returned to them once they paid the complete amount.
Searches in Mumbai led to detection of Rs 60 lakh in banks accounts of the family members of SM Sharma, Bhal revealed. The CBI has seized bank pass books and laptops.
"In Hyderabad, Rs 21.5 lakh in cash and original certificates of 444 aspirants were recovered from the residence of the then ADRM," the spokesperson said.
Besides this, Rs 12 lakh along with incriminating documents, such as question papers and original certificates of the aspiring candidates were recovered from the possession of Jagannatham at a Bangalore Hotel, where he was staying.
Incriminating documents have been recovered from the searches at Kolkata, Hyderabad and Raipur, the CBI informed before advising the railway jobs aspirants to stay vigilant as there are many more scams taking place across the country.