bandh APPSC

Itanagar, May 10: The Arunachal Pradesh administration imposed Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) in the capital Itanagar to prevent any untoward incident following a 72-hour bandh called by protesters until May 12 over the Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Commission (APPSC) paper leak case last year.

The bandh demands the state government intervene in the matter and accept their demands, including declaring all the examinations conducted by the APPSC as “null and void”.

Due to the bandh, business establishments, markets, banks, educational institutions, and government, and private offices have been closed, and vehicles kept off the road.

The administration has also warned of decisive action against anyone violating the restrictions on public movement. Itanagar Deputy Commissioner Talo Potom, however, deemed the bandh unnecessary and stated that the situation was normal.

“The administration is eyeing the situation. Everything is normal here. People have understood that the protesters don’t have any issue after all,” Potom said.

In February, a clash occurred between Pan Arunachal Joint Steering Committee (PAJSC) and Itanagar police personnel leaving 10 people, including four cops injured over the APPSC recruitment examination paper leak.

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The APPSC paper leakage issue resulted in the formation of a special investigation cell under the vigilance department, and later handed over the case to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in September last year, following the investigation agency’s filing of a charge sheet against eight accused persons in December.

Among them, six, including examination in charge Taket Jerang, who was also the former deputy secretary and deputy controller of examinations at the commission, a teacher of a coaching Institute, and a candidate in the recruitment exam, were arrested over the paper leakage of the written examination (Mains) for the post of assistant engineer (Civil) last year.

Earlier, the All Arunachal Pradesh Students Union (AAPSU) and All Nyishi Students Union (ANSU) held a series of protests over the issue and also cited similar paper leak issues that occurred in 2014 and 2017. So far, 54 individuals, including 41 government officers, have been arrested in connection with the APPSC paper leak case.