Paper leak mafia unplugged

A Tehelka SIT report unveils an illicit network that not only orchestrates paper leaks but also aids those desperate to immigrate in navigating the illicit ‘donkey’ route, as famously depicted in the eponymously named recent Bollywood hit

 “’Our mafia reigns supreme as the main force behind the leakage of examination papers. There isn’t a single examination in India that escapes our sway. Our reach extends to even the prestigious IAS examination, which is available for a price tag of Rs 3 crore. We assure you a foolproof package, covering Prelims, Main, and Interview, all with an unequivocal 100% guarantee.’

This shocking revelation comes to light as Rakesh Bhandari, an agent from Delhi, unveils his illicit services to an undercover reporter of Tehelka boasting how he could get any examination paper of India leaked in exchange for money.

Bhandari also explained to the reporter the imperative of maintaining a low-profile existence to evade the watchful eyes of law enforcement agencies. He explained that living lavishly post the proceeds from their myriad illegal ventures would inevitably attract unwanted attention. While elaborating on the clandestine operations of his gang, Bhandari said that they were not only involved in orchestrating paper leaks but were also facilitating an underground network to help Indians navigate the illicit and dangerous “donkey” route –  a clandestine path to foreign shores for those  desperate to immigrate — famously depicted  in recent hit Bollywood film ‘Dunki.’ Additionally, they aid individuals in securing foreign citizenship of specific countries, all of course in exchange for a financial transaction.

Bhandari then unveiled the shady business practices prevalent in their industry, where they adhere to unconventional ethics. One curious tactic was:  always bring a woman along to deals. A strategic move anticipating that, if things take a turn for the worse, the presence of a woman can serve as a potential escape route from negative situations. Additionally, they operate as a tight-knit gang, maintaining a code of silence among themselves. Refusing to share phone numbers with clients, they communicate exclusively in coded language to navigate the murky waters of their illicit dealings, he revealed.

Rakesh Bhandari came to meet with the Tehelka reporter in a five-star hotel in Delhi to finalise a deal under which question paper of the Foreign Medical Graduate Examination (FMGE ) of 2024, to be held on 20th January, would be provided in exchange for Rs 18 lakh per candidate. As per the existing regulations, any student who pursued medicine from an international institution must clear the screening test, FMGE, administered twice a year by the autonomous body National Board of Examination (NBA). This test is a prerequisite for obtaining provisional or permanent registration with the National Medical Commission (NMC) or State Medical Councils (SMCs), allowing them to practice medicine in India legally. Bhandari assured our reporter of a foolproof arrangement this year, guaranteeing the leakage of FMGE question papers two days before the exam at a fixed rate of Rs 18 lakh per candidate.

Unaware that we were just posing as his prospective clients, Bhandari then explained the arrangement for executing the plan. It involved handing the paper to our students on January 16th-17th at a location designated by Bhandari, who would then escort our students to a pre-decided place of his choice. Following the resolution of the paper by Bhandari’s associate, our students would be ‘released’ on the night of January 18th for the exam on January 20th. He asserted a 100% certainty of getting hold of the question paper days before the FMGE exam this year. Notably, he mentioned that while he charged 20-25 lakh per candidate from others, he was offering us a discounted rate of Rs 18 lakh per candidate owing to our familiarity with him.

Reporter- Ye bataiye kis tarekey se hoga.. aapne 3 tareke bataye they.?

Bhandari- Ek tareka to wo jo best hai..paper wala

Reporter- Paper leak hoga?

Bhandari- Haan..karwa dunga paper ko

Reporter- Exam 20 January ko hai?

Bhandari- 18 takeekh ko raat ko chodh dunga usko.

Reporter- Paper leak kahan se hoga,?

Bhandari- Leak kahan se ho raha hai, aa raha hai mere pass.

Reporter- Aapke pass aa raha hai..matlab exam se pehle aa raha hai, leak hi ho gaya na.

Bhandari- 17 tareekh.. 18 tareekh.

Reporter-17-18 mein paper aa raha hai..?

Reporter- 17-18 mein padega wo.

Bhandari- Dikha dunga 17-18 mein padega wo.

Reporter- Solve kaun karwayega paper ladke ko?

Bhandari- Solve karwa kar dunga.

Reporter- Aapke pass hain bandey?

Bhandari- hmm.

Reporter- Kya system rahega bandey ka hisab kitab?

Bhandari- Waise to 20-25 lakh rupees leta hoon logon se aapse to 18 mein baat hui hai…

Reporter- Haan last time 18 mein hui thi..

Bhandari- Is baar 100 percent hai..100 percent

Reporter- Mainey ek ladke se milwaya bhi tha

Bhandari- Is baar pakka hai..uska phone hona chahiye wahan par jahan par location hai, register karwaya ho.

[Unaware of our true intentions of exposing the malpractices, the Delhi agent dangled a tempting proposition of an access to this year’s FMGE paper for a hefty Rs 18 lakh. According to the plan, Bhandari’s associate would crack the leaked paper and equip our student with answers before his release on January 20th.]

Bhandari then revealed his modus operand: he would pick up our student from a designated spot, who would remain under his care on January 17th-18th for a fee of Rs 10k. On the evening of January 18th, after his associate solved the question paper for our candidate, he would be released to appear in the FMGE exam scheduled for January 20th.

Reporter- Poora system samjha do kaise hoga bacchey ka?

Bhandari- Baccha aayega apne pass se..aap mujhse bacchey ko milwaogey kahin, koi point rakhenge, jaise sha…XXXa ho gaya, mein yahan se pick karunga..

Reporter- Bacchey ko yahan se pick karoge jo bhi point aapko bataya jayega..?

Bhandari- Point mein dunga aapko…kahan milna hai.

Reporter- Aap bataoge ya main bataonga?

Bhandari- Main hi bataonga…..aapke point par thodi aaunga main..main aapko kahunga is point par aao…aap k pass 10-12 bacchey hain…12 bacchey lekar aa jao..hamari gadiyan lagi hongi, hum pickup kara denge.

Bhandari- Aur jagah bhi rakhi hain hamne.. uska Rs 10,000 rupiya hoga.

Reporter- Delhi main hi..?

Bhandari- Kahin bhi ho aapko thodi bata denge, kahan par hain hum..

Reporter- Nahin matlab jagah Delhi mein hi hogi..?

Bhandari- Aas pass..hi hogi.

Bhandari- Uska khana rehna do din ka..

Reporter- ladke ko do din.?

Bhandari- Haan matlab 17 tareekh ko le liya usko, 18 tareekh ko chodh denge usko..6-7 baje.

Reporter- Paper solve karwa ke.?

Bhandari- Sab kuch karwa ke…

Bhandari- 19 tareekh ko wo aapke pass rahega.

Reporter- Theek hai

Bhandari- 20 tareekh ko Exam de dega..confirm ho jayega..

[Bhandari revealed his strategy: picking up students for a two-day period at Rs 10k, with the promise that, after his associate solved the exam paper, they would be released to take the FMGE exam on January 20th.]

Bhandari told us that our students would have to memorize the answers he would provide before the exam, assuring us that his prepared question paper would be an exact match of the final one on January 20th.

Reporter- Aur wahi questions nahi aaye exam mein to…?

Bhandari- Ho hi nahi sakta.

Reporter- Guarantee?

Bhandari- Guarantee…phir itni mehnat kyun karunga main.

[While emphasizing the necessity for our students to memorize the answers he would supply, Bhandari offered a guarantee that his prepared question paper would align with the final one, scheduled for January 20th.]

Subsequently, Bhandari requested us to keep the foreign MBBS degree, mark sheets, and four post-dated cheques for the agreed-upon amount handy to avoid any last minute glitches.

Bhandari- Documens le lo..

Reporter- Document main kya kya?

Bhandari- Degree aur transfer.

Reporter- Degree MBBS ki, jo usne videsh se ki hai ?

Bhandari- Haan aur marks card jo uska hota hai.

Reporter- Marksheet?

Bhandari- Haan wo degree k saath hi hoti hai, aur 4 cheque…baccha apne naam se dega..

Reporter- 4 cheque.. PDC ke kitne amount ke.?.

Bhandari- jaise 20-22 lakh ki baat hui, to aap apne hisab se karlo na…

Reporter- Jaise 20 lakh ki baat hui to, 5-5 lakh ke…PDC wo aap ko dene honge…

[Now, Bhandari advised us to keep the academic documents of the students along with four PDCs of the agreed upon amount handy to ensure smooth execution of the plan.]

As per Bhandari, payment from the students will be collected after they successfully clear their exam. He reiterates to our reporter that obtaining the leaked paper from him ensures a guaranteed passing outcome for our students.

Reporter- Accha payment kab karni hogi ladke ko.?

Bhandari- Result k baad.

Reporter- Result kab aayega ?

Bhandari- 20 tareekh ka exam hai to 2 Feburary tak aayega result.

Reporter- 2 Feb ko result aa jayega uske baad payment karna hai…

Bhandari- 48 ghante k ander ander..

Reporter- Result aane k 48 ghantey k ander ander payment karna hai… 10-12 din koi payment nahi karna…?

Bhandari- Kyun karoge aap, usko to pata hoga mein pass hoon.

Reporter- Matlab 20 ko usne exam de diye , 20 k baad 2 tareekh ko usko payment karna hai agar pass ho gaya to…?

Bhandari- Wo to hoga hi hoga pass.

Reporter- Guarantee hai..?

Bhandari- Bhaisaheb usko wohi pakdaya hai jo aa raha hai…

[To gain his confidence, the Delhi agent assured our reporter that payment from our students would be collected after they successfully cleared their exams]

After talking in detail about the FMGE paper leak of January 20th 2024 exam, Bhandari turned  to another facet of his operation: facilitating foreign citizenship for monetary gains. Bhandari put the reporter on the phone with his associate, Naveen. Described as the “right man” for the job, Naveen outlined a scheme involving a Polish woman willing to enter a contract marriage with an Indian man in exchange for money.

During the phone conversation, Naveen explained the modus operandi : The Polish woman would travel to India, marry the man, and subsequently they would return to Poland. After a few months, they would dissolve the marriage, leaving the Indian man with a Polish passport and citizenship.

When apprised of the conversation, Bhandari confirmed its accuracy, calling it the “right way” to obtain foreign citizenship. While further explaining the financial aspects, he said that the Polish woman would be paid expenses for travelling to India, and the remaining sum would be due after the citizenship was secured.

Reporter- Citizenship ki main bata doon unhoney kya bataya hai Naveen ji ne…jissey aapne phone par baat karwai hai, unhoney kaha hai ke jaise Poland ki hai, Poland ki citizenship chahiye jahan English speaking ho…age bata di maine wo taiyar hai..

Bhandari- Age zyada hai…

Reporter- Nahi nahi dekhne mein 35 ka lagta hai wo…aap uski tension na lo, Naveen ji se baat ho gayi hai meri..wo keh rahe hain ladki aayegi Poland se shadi kar legi…nagrikta k liye, uske baad wo ladki unko lekar wahan chali jayegi Poland, wahan divorce ho jayega..

Bhandari- 5 mahine…3-4 mahine mein mil jayega.

Reporter- Aur citizenship mil jayegi… ye hai.

Bhandari- Tareeka to wo hi hota hai na..wo genuine kaam kara kar dega..

Reporter- Iska bhi payment baad mein hoga…?

Bhandari- Jo ladki aayegi uska kharcha kaun dega…wahan se flight pakad kar aayegi kharcha to aap dogey na… to India, rest money will be paid after the work.

[Bhandari, after discussing the FMGE paper leak, revealed his involvement in arranging contract marriages for obtaining foreign citizenship.]

Bhandari openly admitted to our undercover reporter that he wielded absolute control over the entire paper leak syndicate even as he claimed that he operated from his base in Tashkent. According to him, he wields the power to orchestrate the leakage of any examination paper in India, even extending his influence to civil services.

When asked about the rate for leaking civil services papers, Bhandari dropped the bombshell: It is Rs 3 crore, and it would cover prelims, mains, and the interview. Furthermore, he assured our reporter that this year, he holds the key to leaking the FMGE paper.

Reporter- Paper confirm ho raha hai leak is baar ka..2024?

Bhandari- Sir ji koi bhi paper bologey na aap, koi bhi paper bologey, wo poora Mafia hai mere saath….Tashkent mein aisey hi na thodi betha tha main..

Reporter- IAS ka?

Bhandari- Paisa bahut lagta hai usmein.

Reporter- Kitna?

Bhandari- 3 crore…de dogey…?

Reporter- Civil services ka nikalwa do, dono ka ya ek ka ?

Bhandari- Dono ka 100 percent, interview tak setting kara kar chalni padti hai…prelims to aram se nikal dega, main rehta hai interview tak setting…kaunsa cadre kar raha hai, is baar kaun sa aayega, wo yehi kaam to kartey hain saarey.

[Bhandari  claimed that while he was sitting in a distant Taskent, he still wielded the keys to unlocking any Indian exam paper, including the coveted civil services. His price tag for this illicit access to civil sevices exam? A staggering Rs 3 crore, encompassing prelims, mains, and even the final interview.]

Then Bhandari went on to divulge further details about his shadowy enterprises, shedding light on his involvement in illegal immigration. According to him, he possesses connections with individuals capable of facilitating the illicit passage of Indians to foreign lands through the covert “donkey” route.

Reporter- Teesra batao “Donkey” route..

Bhandari- Wohi karayega, bol diya tha mainey..par wo thoda sirdardi wala kaam hai…

Reporter- Accha bata to do..?

Bhandari- Usmein kya hota hai ki…5-6 country ghoomney padtey hain..

Reporter- Kaun- kaun se?

Bhandari- Wo bata dega aapko saare..

Reporter- Kaun batayega?

Bhandari- Naveen bhai, Naveen bhai ka hai ek aadmi…Zara wala karta hai ye kaam..wo to king hai, king pin hai Zara wala..

Reporter- Zara wala kaun..?

Bhandari- Ye code words hotey hain.. is line mein code words mein baat hoti hai..naam se nahi hoti..aapka bhi code word hi hoga phir aagey..

Reporter- Theek hai..

Bhandari- Hamare ko to apna lena hai…agey bhej diya aapnae, thoda se ye hota hai..jaise 20 aadmi aapne bhej diye, ek aadmi ka kabhi kabhi phas gaya maamla…

Reporter- Haan wo to aapne bataya tha phone pe..

Bhandari- Tabhi to ye kaam hum thoda sa kam kartey hain

Reporter- Kis- kis country ka ho sakta hai..?

Bhandari- Jahan par bhi chahe.

Reporter- America, Canada?

Bhandari- USA ja sakta hai…

Reporter- USA?

Bhandari- Wahan par passport phek de, asylum le lenge..mujko khatra hai ji..

Reporter- Asylum le le, wo to London mein bhi ho jayega?

Bhandari- London mein bhi ho jayega..

Bhandari- Ek jhund jata hai ek ke baad, phir pakde jaatey hain…2-4 din, 5-7 din band rehtey hain..phir asylum mil jata hai..

Reporter- Ye ho jayega.. kyunki is mein bhi kuch log hain isliye mein pooch raha tha…?

Bhandari- Bhai sahib ek baat batao kaun sa kaam mushkil hai..?

[Bhandari  bragged about  his ability to arrange clandestine journeys for desperate individuals seeking new lives abroad, claiming access to a secretive network dubbed as “donkey” route. He boasted that no task was insurmountable for him.]

However, it must be told that the incident  described above is not an isolated case of paper leak in India. In the recent past, there have been numerous instances of malpractices spanning various examinations, ranging from school-level papers to recruitment tests. What sets this apart, though, is that for the first time, a member of the paper leak mafia has been captured on Tehelka’s spy camera, openly confessing his intention to leak the question paper for the January 20th, 2024 FMGE examination.

As we come to the conclusion of our investigative report, we can safely say that the claims made by Bhandari, if true, paint a disturbing picture of systemic corruption eroding the very foundation of India’s meritocratic system. Additionally, his boast of facilitating the illicit passage of Indians to foreign lands through the covert “donkey” route exposes the dark underbelly of citizenship acquisition and the lengths some individuals will go to for a passport to a new life.