Country’s biggest minority scholarship scam busted, over 50 percent institutions found ‘Fake’

A total of 830 of the scrutinized 1572 institutions of the country were found to be involved in the Minority scholarship scam.

In a major incident, a significant portion of institutions participating in the minority scholarship program has been discovered to be fraud. As per an internal investigation conducted by the Ministry of Minority Affairs, around 53 percent of these institutions are deemed ‘Fake.’

The enquiry revealed a corruption in 830 institutions, leading to a scam of staggering Rs 144.83 crore over the past five years. The matter has now been brought to the notice of CBI by Union Minister Smriti Irani for further probe.

An official complaint was lodged by the Ministry of Minority Affairs regarding this issue on July 10. The investigation spanned to 100 districts across the country. A total of 1572 institutions were scrutinized, 830 of which were found to be involved in fraud activities. Further investigations are still underway.

As a consequence, concerned authorities have taken the step of freezing the accounts associated with these 830 institutions.

The scholarship program initiated by the Ministry extends to approx. 1,80,000 institutions. This program covers students from primary education to higher levels. Alarmingly, these fake institutions managed to exploit the program by deceivingly claiming the scholarships meant for minority students each year.

CBI will also be investigating the officials of these institutions who approved the fake repots. District officers will also be questioned. Furthermore, questions have been raised about how banks allowed the fake accounts getting created with fake Aadhar cards and documents.

Astonishingly, it has also been reported that many of these institutions were non-existent or non-operational. They even manages to register on National Scholarship Portal and the Unififed District Information System for Education (UDISE).

In Kerela, one branch disbursed 66,000 scholarships. This was higher than the registered number of minority students who were eligible for scholarships. Similarly in Kashmir, one college claimed 7,000 scholarships with 5,000 registered students.

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