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Who Is 'Solver Gang' Head Mukhiya Linked To Multiple Paper Leak Cases And Now Facing CBI Probe? Here's A Brief Profile

Swarajya Staff

Jun 25, 2024, 05:24 PM | Updated 05:33 PM IST

Students being frisked before entering the NEET exam centre. (Representative Image)
Students being frisked before entering the NEET exam centre. (Representative Image)

Sanjeev Kumar ‘Mukhiya’, aged 51, is the leader of what is now known as the 'Solver Gang' — an interstate network accused of selling solved question papers of competitive exams to those willing to pay.

He is believed to have been involved in at least five major paper leak cases, including the Bihar teachers’ recruitment exam for which his son, Dr Shiv alias Bitu, was arrested earlier this year.

A resident of Nalanda, Mukhiya is currently on the run, though he has filed for anticipatory bail in a local court.

Mukhiya, so-called because his wife was the former village head of Nalanda’s Bhutahakhar panchayat from 2016 to 2021, has allegedly been involved in paper leak rackets for over two decades.

He started as an aide to Ranjeet Don, who was involved in several exam rackets in the 1990s and early 2000s, before eventually operating on his own.

According to a report from The Indian Express, Mukhiya has been a technical assistant at Udyan Vidyalaya in Nalanda’s Noorsarai for over 10 years and has been named in at least four paper leak rackets both inside and outside Bihar.

He has been arrested twice — once for a block-level examination in Bihar a decade ago and again in 2016 for a suspected paper leak in Uttarakhand’s constable recruitment exam.

Mukhiya’s son Shiv, a doctor, was arrested earlier this year for alleged irregularities in Bihar’s Teacher Recruitment Exam-III. Mukhiya was also accused of involvement in the case but was not arrested.

Investigators revealed that Mukhiya’s close aide, Baldev Kumar, received a PDF of the solved question paper on the morning of 5 May — the day of the exam. Candidates were allegedly made to memorise this solved answer key. Baldev is one of the five alleged ‘Solver Gang’ members arrested in the case from Jharkhand’s Deoghar.

Just before the 2020 assembly elections, Mukhiya’s wife, Mamata Devi, a former member of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal (United), left the party and contested the election from Nalanda’s Harnaut as a candidate of the Lok Janshakti Party, losing to JD(U)’s Hari Narayan Singh.

On Monday, the Opposition party Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) released photos of Mamata Devi with leaders of the JD(U) and other National Democratic Alliance parties. Neither the JD(U) nor Chirag Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party (Ram Vilas) has commented on this yet.

RJD national spokesperson Manoj K Jha has stated that the party released the photos “to highlight the gravity of the matter”. “The scam, involving multiple states and raising questions about the NTA, needs thorough investigation," he added.

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