Students appearing exam at S M Girls' High School Old Town, Bhubaneswar on MondayBhubaneswar: Feeling deeply regretted over the HSC question paper theft issue in Bhagabati Bidyapitha in Puri district, the State Government on Friday ordered a Crime Branch probe into the matter.

The issue rocked the State Assembly on Friday with the Opposition demanding the resignation of the Chief Minister and the School and Mass Education Minister for lapses and inquiry by the CB or a judicial commission.

Replying to the discussion on the issue, Mass Education Minister Pratap Jena said, the Chief Minister had already ordered a Crime Branch inquiry into the “unfortunate” incident and the department had placed four employees including the concerned centre superintendent under suspension for their alleged involvement. However, action would be taken against the culprits on the basis of the Crime Branch inquiry report.

Jena assured that despite the postponement of the examinations for at least 20 days, steps were being taken to stick to the earlier deadline of June 30, fixed for publication of results to facilitate admission in Plus Two stream in time.

However, both the Congress and the BJP members alleged that there was a conspiracy behind the question paper theft incident and it was a ploy by the Government to divert the attention of the public from the abduction of two Italian citizens.