Seven accused in the Vyapam scam were given bail by a court on Tuesday as the Central Bureau of Investigation had summoned them under the wrong section of the Criminal Procedure Code, the Hindustan Times reported. They were summoned under Section 160, which requires one to appear at the police station to record a statement, but were taken to the court instead.

The defence argued that they were not summoned under Section 170, which is invoked to record a statement in front of a magistrate. The CBI demanded that they be sent to jail, but the court agreed with the defence.

The investigation agency on Tuesday filed a chargesheet against 490 people in the case, of which 88 were summoned under Section 160, but then taken to the court. At the court, they were told that they would face another charge under which they could be arrested. Many of the accused ran away from the court premises.

The CBI then demanded that those who fled be declared absconders, but the court refused. The judge gave them 15 days to request bail.

The Vyapam scam

The case is related to alleged irregularities in various entrance and recruitment examinations conducted by the Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board, also known as Vyavsayik Pariksha Mandal, or Vyapam.

Though FIRs in the scam had been filed from around 1995, the racket finally came to light in May 2012 when an invigilator at a test for veterinary colleges realised that one of the candidates was not who he claimed to be.

On investigation, the police found a long trail of such scams spread across various districts in the state.

In July 2015, the Supreme Court had ordered that all criminal cases connected with the Vyapam scam be transferred to the CBI.