A ‘doctor’ living in Ahmedabad’s Paldi, has been sentenced to three years in jail for forging his Class 12 marksheet to secure admission to the MBBS course 44 years ago.
According to the case details, the accused, identified as Utpal Patel passed his Class 12 board exams with 398 out of 800 marks in 1980. His score of 49% left him ineligible for medical admission. He got another marksheet after applying for re-checking of his marks.
He allegedly forged the marksheet to show that he had scored 547 marks or 68%. He then applied for MBBS admission and got a seat at BJ Medical College.
The Gujarat Secondary Education Board, on the other hand, learned about Patel’s marksheet and wrote to the college saying there was no change in Patel’s marks.
He had secured the seat based on a forged document after getting his hands on a blank letterhead and marksheet from the board’s office. The college issued notice to Patel asking to show why his admission should not be cancelled.
The college filed a complaint at Shahibaug police station in 1991, as soon as it was established that Patel’s marksheet was forged. The metropolitan court framed charges against Patel in 2014 and put him on trial for cheating, forgery and theft.
Additional chief metropolitan magistrate PN Naveen finally completed the trial now, in 2024, convicting him of cheating and forgery but acquitting him of theft.
Patel’s advocate pleaded that he should not be sentenced to a jail term, seeking leniency and benefits under the Probation of Offenders Act. He said Patel was a medical practitioner and served society by running a clinic in the city. The offence was committed when he was just 17 years old. He is now 60 and has a family.
The prosecution demanded the maximum punishment permissible under the law, seven years, saying if those associated with the medical profession behave in this manner it will motivate others to commit similar offences.
The judge sentenced Patel to three years imprisonment and a Rs 30,000 fine, with the observation that Patel had been ineligible for medical admission but cornered someone else’s MBBS seat using the bogus marksheet.
This was an act against society and the court is duty bound to ensure that others do not repeat such an offence. The court also cancelled Patel’s bail bonds.
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