India: In what appears to be a fresh scandal brewing in nursing education in the state, certificates issued by the Karnataka State Nursing Council to qualified nurses have been used to generate fake papers for several other candidates.
These certificates have been faked by replacing the candidates’ photographs, names, final exam registration numbers and college names and the council is in the dark over the recipients’ credentials. According to documents available with TOI, fake certificates issued to the candidates bear the names of eight nursing colleges from Bengaluru, Tumakuru, Raichur and Bidar.
Acting on a complaint made to the medical education department by a whistleblower, the council is now verifying all its documents. The complainant has alleged that the certificates have been doctored to suit the requirements of candidates who had failed to complete the course, but were working in hospitals already. “These certificates have been created to make certain candidates work in hospitals though they have not completed the course at that time. This could also be a part of a racket to show adequate number of nurses in hospitals during MCI and NABH inspections,” the complaint stated. “We’re crosschecking the certificates.
While the fake ones carry council registration numbers, the photos, names and exam registration numbers have been changed. Incidentally, most nurses whose documents have been tampered with are from Kerala and have studied in the state’s nursing colleges. There are chances that these nurses had shared their original certificates with some agents while seeking jobs abroad. That could be one of the ways by which miscreants might have accessed genuine certificates for producing fake ones,” said Srikanth G Phulari, registrar, academics, Karnataka State Nursing Council. For example, the registration certificate of a nurse who bore the register number ‘074781’ and had passed BSc nursing course from a Bengaluru college has been used to create fake certificates for eight persons. The names of three different nursing colleges have been used in these fake certificates. The council will form a committee to look into allegations and submit a report to the government, Phulari added. BN Muninarayanappa, former registrar, administration, Karnataka State Nursing Council who retired on August 31, said fake certificates may have been made by scanning the original ones and covering the original name and photo of the candidates. Some of these certificates carry his signature too. “Original certificates have been misused. Genuine candidates should also be consulted regarding this. Earlier too, we had complained to police on fake certificates,” he said.
A copy of the complaint has also been sent to RGUHS. However, Dr MK Ramesh, registrar, RGUHS, said he had not received any such complaints. “Even my signature was forged in some of the provisional certificates issued by a college. That’s being investigated by the CID. With the advent of technology, it’s no rocket science to produce a fake certificate. If we get documents pertaining to other nursing colleges, we’ll refer the case for investigation to CID,” said Dr Ramesh.
Source : TOI