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Ex-MP minister arrested in MPPEB scam

Former Madhya Pradesh higher education minister Laxmikant Sharma, who was recently interrogated by Special Task Force (STF) over his alleged role and involvement in manipulation of results in recruitment of contract teachers, was arrested on Sunday.

“He has been arrested this afternoon,” a police official told Business Standard.

Though Sharma had denied allegations, his arrest, according to police sources, was imminent. He was recently grilled over the issue by STF for almost four hours.

He was shown a list of 12 candidates, which STF had retrieved from the hard disk of Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board (MPPEB’s) chief system analyst Nitin Mohiondra, prime accused in the case.

Sharma, who comes from Sironj assembly constituency, was also known as close confident of chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan. In his recent visit to Bhopal, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat had also denied protecting him when a section of media had reported that he had been shielded by top politicians and RSS.

The STF had interrogated him over those twelve candidates, who were according to STF record, were recommended by apparently referring to Sharma.

However, Sharma had denied his role in the recruitment scam and said neither he knew any of them nor were they recommended by him.

The police sources said that Sharma’s name figured in two separate FIRs alleging cheating and forgery in contractual teachers’ recruitment.

Name of another government official Dhanraj Yadav, officer on duty to state Governor Ram Naresh Yadav, also figured in FIR. He had resigned from his post.

He was arrested two months ago. Another prominent individual named in these cases includes Sudhir Sharma who is now carrying a reward of Rs 5000 over his head. He was close to the minister.

A Congress leader Sanjeev Saxena has also been arrested in this case.

Laxmikant Sharma lost his 2013 assembly election by just 1,500 votes.

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