CBI arrests retd Orissa HC judge IM Quddusi in corruption case

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New Delhi: The CBI on Thursday arrested six persons, including retired judge of Orissa High Court Ishrat Masroor Quddusi, for allegedly helping an Uttar Pradesh-based educational trust to admit students to MBBS courses despite a Supreme Court order barring them from doing so.

The other arrested were identified as middleman Biswanath Agrawala, owners of private medical college – B P Yadav and Palash Yadav, hawala operator Ram Dev Saraswat and one Bhawna Pandey.

The central investigating agency had registered a case against them under charges of criminal conspiracy of the IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act on Tuesday and conducted raids at eight locations in Delhi, Lucknow and Bhubaneswar the following day.

During the raids, including at Quddusi’s South Delhi’s Greater Kailash residence, the CBI sleuths recovered Rs 1.91 crore. Middleman Biswanath Agrawala had received Rs 1 crore of the amount seized from a hawala dealer, CBI sources said.

Quddusi has been accused of not only legally guiding the functionaries of the private medical college but also assured favourable settlement of their case in the Supreme Court, the sources added.

The institute is among the 46 colleges barred by the government from admitting medical students for the next two years (till 2019) because of substandard facilities and non-fulfillment of the required criteria. The owners had challenged the debarment in the Supreme Court earlier this year.

On August 1, the apex court directed the government to consider the materials on record. “In compliance thereof, the government afforded an opportunity of hearing to the college and thereafter passed a decision on August 10, 2017, to debar the college for two years, 2017 to 2019, and also authorised the MCI to encash the bank guarantee of Rs 2 crore,” the FIR said.

Thereafter, B P Yadav got in touch with Justice (retd) I M Quddusi and Bhawana Pandey through one Sudhir Giri of Venkateshwara Medical College in Meerut and conspired for getting the matter settled. “Information further revealed that on the advice of I M Quddusi, the petition was withdrawn from the apex court on August 15, and later filed a petition in Allahabad High Court. They further engaged Biswanath Agrawala, who claimed very close contact with senior relevant public functionaries, for getting the matter settled. However, he demanded huge gratification for inducing public servants by corrupt and illegal means in lieu of help,” the FIR added.

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