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Featured Image: The West Bengal CID office at Bhavani Bhavan at Alipore in south Kolkata.     

By A Newsman

Kolkata, 17 September: AFTER the lapse of 21 days since a bagful of question papers went missing leading to the postponement of primary Teacher Eligibility Test (TET) in West Bengal, the state’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID) on Thursday maintained that it happened by accident.

Addressing a Press conference Thursday afternoon, CID’s inspector general Vineet Goyal said that a large number of question paper bags were being transported from Salt Lake to various designate distribution centres in Hooghly by a hired private bus on 27 August.

“After the bus crossed Nivedita Setu (lying between Dhakshineswar and Bally), the rear most glass of the bus broke down due to a jerk and a bag fell on the road near the Bombay Road – Delhi Road Crossing at Maitya Para,” Goyal said.

“A Taratala bound lorry which was then passing by the spot, picked up the bag thinking that there were valuables inside. On opening it, the lorry driver and helper found the papers; disappointed, they threw it into a road-side ditch a little ahead of the FCI godown at Taratala,” he said, adding that a Sumo car had noticed the lorry crew picking up the bag from Maity Para.

CID has apparently learnt this during the course of the investigation over the past one fortnight and has cross verified this by questioning the lorry driver and its owner Tarun Bhuniya. CID, however, could not speak to the lorry’s helper as he has gone to his native place in Bihar.

The investigators have also failed to recover the bag that was thrown into the ditch. Goyal said that a search was on to locate it.

The question paper going missing had compelled the state education department to postpone the primary TET that was to take place on 30 August. At first, 04 October was announced as the new date for the exam but the same was later pushed back to 11 October.

A little over 23-lakh aspirants are to take the primary TET throughout West Bengal this year.