New Delhi: Ketan Desai, the man who was supposed to ensure a transparent and efficient medical system in the country, is now in jail for having taken a bribe of Rs2 crore to recognise a medical college in Patiala.
As chairman of Medical Council of India his job is to ensure that medical colleges offer quality education and the doctors they produce are not below par.
But Ketan Desan has been instead recognising colleges by charging substantial amounts of money. So MCI has come to be known as the Most Corrupt Institution in the country.
CBI has raided his palatial bungalow in Ahmebadad and has been stunned by his involvement in numerous land deals and investments.
Gold worth Rs 39 lakh has been recovered from his bank lockers. His bank balance runs into Rs 1.8 crores when you add all the thirteen accounts connected to him.
CNN-IBN has learnt that the CBI is investigating all medical colleges which were given accreditation in the past few years.
CBI sources say about 30 to 35 medical institutes got recognition after paying money. The agency is likely to seek information through a public appeal for anyone with information on how medical colleges obtain permissions.
CNN-IBN spoke to several people in the medical field to unravel how Desai ran MCI like a cartel. If anyone needs to start a medical college or increase seats it needs accreditation from the MCI.
CBI has also put up a public plea on its website to get more information on Ketan Desai's scam.
This is how Desai and friends operated:
The MCI inspection team visited the institute. If the team gave an adverse report the executive council of MCI rejects the application. This is where Desai plays his first card. He negotiates a deal with the college. And then as chairman of MCI supersedes the decision of the executive council.
Former Member, MCI Dr S R Mehta said, “All the decisions pertaining to medical colleges during Dr Desai's tenure need to be looked into and the institutions which have been recognised should be checked for the quality of teachers, infrastructure and facilities.”
Desai along with institutes also seems to have sold seats in medical colleges.
CNN-IBN investigation reveals that there are two entrance exams – state and central. State entrance exams and results are usually much ahead of the central entrance exam. Some students get through both exams. And this is where Desai steps in again.
The information that a student has opted out of state quota and chosen a better central college is not made public as is mandatory.
The seat is sold to the highest bidder. A post graduate seat goes for anywhere between 50 lakhs and two crore rupees. An MBBS seat gets up to 25 lakh rupees. The institute also gets its share.
Karnataka Medical Education Minister Ramchandra Gowda said, “I have been saying this for a long time. He has been running a parallel system for long.”
The Karnataka minister also made revelations that he (Ketan Desai) used to call up state governments to send in doctors of his choice as members.
This is not Desai's first arrest. In 2001 he was arrested for taking a bribe of 65 lakh rupees. The case was closed in 2009 as CBI said it turned out to be "goodwill money". The investigation in this case has just begun and the CBI believes it has enough material to tie him up in knots.
Desai was arrested on Thursday night by the Central Bureau of Investigation along with two other people Jiten Pal Singh and Kanwaljit Singh. The trio had allegedly demanded Rs 2 crore for granting recognition to a private medical college in Punjab.