Lucknow, 25 May: The Allahabad High Court’s Lucknow bench has instructed the CBI to investigate the alleged fraudulent admission scam at Ayush institutions.

The high court has also directed that harsh action be taken if former minister Dharam Singh Saini’s function as additional chief secretary is deemed to be suspect.

The single bench of Justice Rajeev Singh issued this directive to the CBI while granting conditional release to petitioner Ritu Garg.

The Uttar Pradesh government has already requested a CBI investigation into the case. Dharam Singh Saini was the Ayush Minister in Yogi Adityanath’s previous cabinet. On the eve of the 2022 Assembly elections, he defected to the Samajwadi Party.

He later left SP as well. He has been attempting to re-enter the BJP, but his alleged role in the Ayush fraud appears to be a roadblock.

In November 2022, the alleged fraud in Ayush colleges came to light. The Uttar Pradesh government suggested twice that the entire case be examined by the CBI, but no further action was taken. Dharam Singh Saini has been accused of accepting a bribe in exchange for admission. His personal secretary Raj Kumar Diwakar’s allegation against Saini may exacerbate his problems.

According to the secretary, Saini took a bribe of Rs 1 crore and 10 lakh for the recognition of UG in Ayush and Rs 50 lakh for PG.

The secretary’s statement has also been filed in court. The UP STF probed the admission fraud at Ayush institutions and recently submitted a charge sheet. The Directorate of Ayurveda established a counseling board in 2021-22. Because the IT unit was unavailable, the counseling contract was awarded to a private firm, Soft Solution, under the supervision of the board.

From consulting to verification, the private organisation was in charge of everything. Seating was assigned after entry. However, the records of 1,181 students were not identified in the NEET counseling merit list. There were 22 pupils who did not appear in NEET at all.

Following the preliminary inquiry, the Directorate of Ayurveda submitted the names and addresses of the suspected students to the different Ayurveda colleges. It is claimed that the private firm interfered not just with the NEET database, but also with the website.

Manipulations were discovered in the database acquired from the DGME office as well as the private agency’s records. The private agency operator also altered the RDBD of the hard disk acquired from the DGME office when the inquiry began.