Mehsana police have issued a lookout notice for Amit Chaudhary, one of the main accused in the IELTS case. A three-member Special Investigation Team (SIT) is also formed to look into the IELTS scam that involved Planet EDU, an IELTS coaching center.
The scam was unearthed after four candidates from Mehsana — Neil Patel, Dhruv Patel, Urvesh Patel, and Swanendra Patel — and two others were detained by American police on April 28,. They were rescued from a sinking boat while attempting to illegally cross the freezing St Regis river from Canada into the US. Despite having IELTS certificates with more than 7 bands, they were unable to understand and respond to basic English when called to testify in court.
After the American police informed Mehsana police, it started conducting the investigation. It was discovered that, among other places, an IELTS centre in Navsari was used to allow proxy students to appear for those who were enrolled. Scammers tricked the system to allow students to obtain a Canadian visa for a hefty fee ranging from Rs.14 lacs to Rs.30 lacs. The students’ would then cross illegally into the United States. The number of such students with incorrect IELTS scores is estimated to be around 900. The scam had been going on for several years.
The Deputy Superintendent of Police Mehsana, Ramesh Desai. is the supervising officer of the police team that investigates the crime. Janak Rao, crime branch police sub-inspector, is assisting n, and Nilesh Ghetiya is the investigating officer.
Police said, Chaudhary, who is from Sargasan in Gandhinagar, is the link between the students and the other people involved in the case. Ghetiya, stated that. “It is not confirmed whether he (Amit Chaudhary) is in the country or has left abroad,” he said. But for the time being, we have issued a warning. We are questioning his driver, Narendra Chaudhary, whom we arrested this afternoon,”
Gokul Menon, Sawant Fernandes, and Sunny Patel were arrested earlier this month in Ahmedabad for their alleged role in assisting four people from Mehsana villages to falsify their IELTS scores and illegally enter the United States from Canada.
Menon and Fernandes were the IELTS proxy writers, and Patel was the Planet EDU Ahmedabad invigilator.
According to the FIR dated September 4, the two rooms booked in Hotel Fun City in Navsari from September 24 to September 26 in 2021 accommodated Amit Chaudhary and Narendra Chaudhary, as well as two Mizoram girls. The IELTS exam took place in the same hotel. Narendra Chaudhary is not one of the 45 people charged in the FIR.