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Gujarat AAP leader held in dummy candidates racket case; Oppn questions

Gujarat police have arrested AAP leader Yuvrajsinh Jadeja for allegedly extorting Rs 1 crore from two persons

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Press Trust of India Bhavnagar

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The Gujarat police have arrested Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Yuvrajsinh Jadeja in Bhavnagar city of the state for allegedly extorting Rs 1 crore from two persons, one of whom is accused of being the mastermind of the dummy candidates racket that was exposed recently, an official said.
AAP's youth wing leader Jadeja was arrested on Friday night after a marathon questioning by the police that lasted for hours, he said. Jadeja is credited for exposing the alleged dummy candidates racket earlier this month.
Inspector General of Police Bhavnagar range Gautam Parmar said Jadeja extorted Rs 45 lakh from Prakash Dave, the alleged mastermind of the case, and Rs 55 lakh from Pradeep Baraiya for not revealing their names in a press conference for their alleged involvement in the dummy candidates racket.
Following Jadeja's arrest, the AAP as well as the Congress slammed the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for targeting him for exposing question paper leak and dummy candidate cases in recruitment for government jobs. The BJP government has been under attack over several cases of competitive exam question paper leak, many of which were exposed by Jadeja. Jadeja, who had held a press conference in state capital Gandhinagar on April 5 on the subject of dummy candidates racket, was issued summons under section 161 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) to him, asking him to appear before a special investigation team for questioning in the case.
After his questioning by the police, an FIR was registered against him and his aide at the city's Neelambaug police station under sections 386 (extortion by putting a person in fear of death or grievous hurt), 388 (extortion by threat) and 120 (B) (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), Parmar said. As per the details of the case, on March 25, Jadeja's aide had recorded a video of a dummy candidate. They showed the video to Prakash Dave and asked him to arrange Rs 70 lakh if he did not want his name to be revealed in the case. The deal was finalised for Rs 45 lakh, he said. Baraiya was also asked to pay Rs 60 lakh to avoid being named by Jadeja in the press conference, police said. They finalised the deal for Rs 55 lakh, he said, adding that Jadeja collected the money through his aide.
Bhavnagar police have arrested 14 people in a racket in which dummy candidates and aspirants got jobs without taking the competitive and government exams for various government posts.
"In his press conference on April 5, Jadeja did not reveal their names," Parmar said. AAP's state president Isudan Gadhvi said that the government has targeted Jadeja even when the masterminds of the question paper leak and dummy candidate cases remain scot-free. "It is Yuvrajsinh who has exposed several paper leak cases. So it is but natural that some very powerful people are angry at him," Gadhvi said in a video statement last night. "Paper leak and dummy candidates scams run into crores of rupees, and it is Yuvrajsinh who has exposed these cases. The manner in which he has been booked has upset the state's youth and is an attempt to suppress their voice," he said. State Congress president Amit Chavda said that instead of taking action against the perpetrators of question paper leak and dummy candidate rackets, the government has arrested a youth leader who was behind exposing the racket. "I demand from the government that if there is nothing wrong with it, then why does it not call for questioning top BJP leaders who have been accused of being behind the dummy candidate racket? The chief minister should answer this," Chavda said in a video statement.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Apr 22 2023 | 10:21 AM IST

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