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How son of Bihar fake toppers scam kingpin ended up with a promotion

Lalkeshwar Prasad Singh deposited ill-gotten money worth Rs 54 crore at the bank where Rahul Raj works.

 |  3-minute read |   08-07-2016
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Not just the kingpins of the Bihar fake toppers scam - Lalkeshwar Prasad Singh and his wife Usha Singh - benefitted out of the frudulent dealings that have hogged national headlines for sometime now, but also several members of their extended family.

Interestingly, their son, Rahul Raj, working at a nationalised bank in Patna, was promoted out of turn for depositing the ill-gotten money, amounting to Rs 54 crore, at his place of work!

While Lalkeshwar was removed as the Bihar School Examination Board (BSEB) chairperson after the scam came to the fore, his wife, a former MLA of the ruling JDU in the state, also faced the music. Both have been arrested and are languishing in jail.

According to the Patna police, Lalkeshwar had an account in the above-mentioned bank, at which, Rahul Raj, his younger son, is employed. As per Patna police, the former BSEB chairperson had deposited Rs 54 crore in the account. This was handsomely rewarded with Rahul even getting an undeserved promotion.

Obviously, the bank's role also comes under the scanner.

Instead of alerting the Income Tax (IT) department about the huge amount of money that was deposited, they gave a promotion to their employee. Banks ask for the Permanent Account Number (PAN) of customers in case Rs 50,000 or more is deposited. This information is shared with the IT department.

But Lalkeshwar and his son seem to have "managed" the bank authorities as well. The police have asked the nationalised bank to furnish details of the Rs 54 crore which was deposited there.

One of the beneficiaries of the scam was intermediate (Class XII equivalent) in Arts "topper", Ruby Rai, a minor, who was arrested by the police. She rose to infamy for calling Political Science as "Prodigal Science" and describing it as a subject which dealt in "cooking".

In a case of law enforcement overreach, she was treated by the police as a hardened criminal after a media overdrive against her and wrongly put in jail. Later, the court asked the police to send the 17-year-old girl to a juvenile home.

Also read: Bihar must stop treating fake topper as hardened criminal

ruby080716mb_070816042031.jpg In a major faux pas, one of the Bihar fake toppers, Ruby Rai, was arrested and sent to jail despite she being a minor.

But as far as the main accused is concerned, the police believe several members of his family are involved in the scam. Evidently, the exam scam had become a "family business" for them. Lalkeshwar's older son also works in a multinational Indian bank and is posted at its London branch.

Not only Lalkeshwar's sons but also his son-in-law Vivek Kumar is also believed to have a role in the multi crore scam.

The police are on the look out for both the sons and the son-in-law. While the two sons are absconding, the UK-based son-in-law has gone incommunicado. The police are now planning to request the courts for issuing an arrest warrant to nab the younger son.

Also read: Bihar 'toppers' chapter: Nitish Kumar must fix state education

Once the details are made available, it will help the police to blow the lid of the scam. It will also nail Lalkeshwar and other guilty members of his family. This, in turn, will help the police build a watertight case against the accused people.

Writer

Kumar Shakti Shekhar Kumar Shakti Shekhar @shaktishekhar

Delhi-based journalist with more than 20 years of experience in reporting for print, TV & digital media.

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