New Delhi, February 23: India’s education system is “being ruined because of question paper leaks,” the Supreme Court said today when it was hearing a petition linked to a Karnataka High Court order to give bail to the key accused of a 2016 paper leak case. The state government had appealed to the top court to cancel the bail.

Issuing notice to the key accused of the case – Shivakumariah – the top court asked: “Why shouldn’t this bail be cancelled?”. During the hearing, the top court also mentioned the Vyapam scam from Madhya Pradesh, which had hit national headlines several years ago.

“Case like Vyapam in Madhya Pradesh have been distorting and perverting the education system,” the top court said, NDTV reported.

In March 2016, the state government in Karnataka had filed a case over a chemistry question paper lake for pre-university exam. The High Court recently granted bail to Shivkumariah, key accused in the case, and discharged another co-accused Obalaraju.

The Supreme Court Tuesday also stayed the High Court order on the co-accused.

“We want to send a message. These people (leaking question papers) are ruining the education system. We are coming across cases where education system is distorted and perverted. We know what happened in Vyapam case in Madhya Pradesh,” Chief Justice SA Bobde said.

A three-judge bench of Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justices A.S. Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian was hearing the case.

The Vyapam scam pertains to irregularities in exams held by the Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board, also called Vyavasayik Pareeksha Mandal or Vyapam, for admission in professional courses and state services over the course of many years. 

The scam hit national headlines several years ago, with over 2,500 being accused in various cases. In 2016, the Supreme Court directed the CBI to conduct a probe into the scam.

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