Most of those arrested had hired doubles for the exam (file photo: Indian Express)
Police have arrested around 1,000 aspiring constables for using impersonators to sit their exams for them in Bihar, in the latest cheating scandal to hit the state.
Some 50,000 candidates sat the written exams last October to join the police force in the state, senior superintendent Jitender Rana told AFP by phone from Patna. The state government hopes to recruit around 12,000 police constables from their ranks.
But many of those candidates who sat the exam were not the same ones who turned up for the physical fitness tests that are the next stage of the selection process, Rana said.
"The fraud was detected when the signatures, photographs and fingerprints of the candidates were matched with those who had appeared for the exam," Rana said.
"We don't have the exact figures but approximately 1,000 people have been arrested so far over the last few days. These cases are of impersonation and providing false and forged documents."
While most of those arrested had hired doubles for the exam, others were arrested for submitting fraudulent documents.
Some candidates have reportedly admitted paying nearly Rs 1.5 lakh rupees ($2,400) to “middlemen” to help them to clear the exam.
Last year, some 150 people were arrested in Bihar for cheating in a written exam for police constables, according to media reports.
However, a state police official told the Times of India newspaper that the latest round of arrests is the largest ever made for impersonation
Earlier this month, police had detained more than 1,000 people over another cheating scandal in Bihar that saw relatives and friends scale the walls of a school exam centre to help students.
TV channels and photographs showed dozens of people clinging to the windows of a four-storey building to pass cheat sheets to candidates.
The images went viral on social media and made national headlines, stirring chief minister Nitish Kumar and his administration into action.
More than 300 people, many of them parents, were arrested after the publication of the pictures.
Cheating often occurs in various parts of the country although rarely on this scale.
Meanwhile, the arrested police aspirants have been produced before court and forwarded to jail. Police officials are considering this to be just the tip of the iceberg, and expect more arrests in the coming days.