A medical student in India has come under scrutiny after he was allegedly caught cheating with a micro Bluetooth device believed to be surgically implanted into his ear, a college official said.
It was the student’s final attempt on Monday to clear the exam after repeatedly failing it since getting admission into the college 11 years ago.
The student of the private medical college was appearing for the exam at the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Medical College when he was found with a mobile phone in the inner pocket of his trouser which was connected to a Bluetooth device, Dr Sanjay Dixit, dean at the medical college told The Independent.
But they were not able to recover the Bluetooth device while frisking the student, whose name has not been revealed by the college.
“He was taking the General Medicine exam on Monday with 13 others when a university squad of the Devi Ahilya Bai University came for a surprise check and they found one student with a mobile phone and another with some Bluetooth device,” said Dr Dixit.
“The devices have been confiscated and their answer sheets were seized. They were given new answer sheets,” he said.
After questioning by the college officials, one official reportedly said that he had a skin-coloured micro Bluetooth device fixed in his ear by an ENT surgeon, reported Hindustan Times.
Another student was caught with a small SIM-powered device and a micro Bluetooth device, but told college authorities that it was not surgically inserted and can be removed with a pin.
Dr Dixit told The Independent that the students had purposefully concealed these devices because they were asked to submit all the electronics items to the invigilators.
An internal investigation has begun in the matter by the university examination committee and devices have been sent for examination.
After the conclusion of the investigation it would be determined whether the case merits a police case for using unfair means in an exam, deputy registrar Rachna Thakur who was with the squad told the newspaper.
Renu Jain, vice chancellor of the invigilator squad that caught the two students, told PTI: "We think these microphones were surgically fitted in the ears of both the students. Cases have been prepared against both the students. A committee of DAVV will take a decision in this regard."
Students getting caught in mass cheating or deploying sly means to not get caught is not uncommon in India where competition is fierce as aspirants outnumber the number of vacancies for a job and seats in colleges for courses.
Madhya Pradesh state was gripped under a massive scandal, called Vyapam cheating scam, when the Supreme Court had to cancel the licenses of 634 doctors who were involved in it. During the scam, spanning the period between 2008 and 2013, several people were arrested for involvement in leaking question papers, rigging answer sheets and hiring proxies to sit for exams instead of the student.
Dr Anand Rai, the whistleblower in the Vyapam scam, said: “It is very easy to get Bluetooth fitted in the ears. It is attached to the ear temporarily and can be removed. Such a technique was used by a Vyapam scam accused too to clear his medical exam eight years ago.”
In another incident that grabbed both national and international headlines, several parents and relatives of the students were filmed scaling school walls in 2015 as police stood nearby watching the mass cheating unfold in Bihar. The pictures went viral, hundereds were arrested, including some parents, and at least 750 students were expelled.