New Delhi, March 29: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has filed chargesheets against 20 Institutions and 105 persons, including several officials allegedly involved in multi-crore scam in grant of scholarships to schedule caste (SC), schedule tribe (ST) and other backward class (OBC) students of Himachal Pradesh, the agency said in a statement on Friday.

The central probe agency also said that it has concluded investigations in the case. "CBI has filed chargesheets against 20 Institutions and 105 persons including owners of said Institutions, personnel of Directorate of Higher Education, Shimla, Bank officials and other private persons," the CBI said. Himachal Pradesh CM Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu Dismisses Resignation Rumours, Vows To Complete Full Term (Watch Video).

It further said that during the investigation into the case, as many as 19 persons including employees of Directorate of Higher Education, Shimla, chairman, vice chairman, directors and employees of educational Institutes and Bank officials were arrested. The instant case was registered by CBI in the year 2019 on the request of the Himachal Pradesh government, against private educational institutions in the state for fake and fraudulent claims of scholarships of Rs. 181 crore (approx.) during the year 2013 to 2017. Himachal Pradesh: Private Institute Threatens Expulsion Over Students’ Absence on Ram Temple Consecration Day, Inquiry Ordered After Outrage.

Thereafter, High Court of Himachal Pradesh also monitored the investigation of the instant case and accordingly status reports were filed periodically. The case pertains to alleged misuse of the scheme of scholarship and reimbursement of fees launched by the central government, implemented through the state governments to help the students of SC, ST and OBC categories.

The scam was unearthed following reports that the students of government schools in tribal Spiti valley in Himachal's Lahaul and Spiti district had not been paid the scholarship for the last five years. The ED had initiated money laundering investigation on the basis of an FIR registered by the CBI under sections 409 (criminal breach of trust), 419 (cheating by personation), 465 (forgery), 466 (forgery in electronic documents) and 471 (using forged document as genuine) of IPC on May 8, 2019.