Rashid Paul

Suspension of Sentence: HC dismisses ex-BOPEE chief’s plea

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Srinagar, Aug 08:The J&K High Court on Wednesday dismissed a petition by Mushtaq Ahmed Peer, ex-chairman of the Board of Board of Professional Entrance Examination (BOPEE), seeking suspension of the trial court order that sentenced him to 16 years of imprisonment and Rs one crore fine for selling MBBS entrance papers.

“The application of the appellant is found to be devoid of any merit and, as a sequel thereto, the same is dismissed,” ordered Justice M. K. Hanjura, after hearing the petition.

“The offences committed by the applicant/appellant have a serious adverse impact on the fabric of the society. His actions have not even spared the son of a truck driver who had made the grade, but was shown the exit on flimsy grounds. He would have been aspiring to become a doctor, but, in the need and greed of earning undue pecuniary gains on the part of the applicant/ appellant, he, too, has not been spared,” observed Justice Hanjura.

“Therefore, in my considered opinion it is not a fit case where the judgment dated 25th of April, 2018, passed by the Court of Special Judge Anti-Corruption, Kashmir, Srinagar, in case bearing FIR No. 24/2013, of Crime Branch, Srinagar, for the commission of offences punishable under Sections 420, 406, 201, 120-B of the RPC read with Section 5(1)(d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, can be stayed and the sentence recorded against the applicant/appellant suspended,” he said.

The offences committed by the applicant/appellant, as is repeated here, have the potential of undermining the trust of the people in the integrity of medical profession itself, the judge said.

These depict and portray a complete depravity of character. The undeserving candidates admitted in this noble profession will have the impact of depriving the best brains treating the patients, he added.

This dastardly crime is his brainchild and it would not have been possible for the others to have even a glimpse of the question papers had he not defied the state by throwing to winds requisite standards of probity expected from a public servant of his caliber and stature -- having served as teacher at highest level for the maximum part of his career, and chosen to hold the coveted position even after his superannuation, the court observed.

Far from showing any remorse for what he did, he has no hesitation in blaming the then Hon’ble Chief Minister for his involvement into this case, the judge observed.

Peer had filed application for the suspension of sentence awarded to him and for his release on bail on the grounds that he is a 70-years-old man failing in health.

He is “innocent and has not committed any offence”, he pleaded.

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