FIR against BYJU's owner for 'misleading' information in UPSC curriculum


MUMBAI: Mumbai police have registered an FIR against the owner of BYJU’s, a leading education technology firm, for allegedly putting misleading information in its UPSC curriculum, an official said on Wednesday.

Based on the complaint filed by a firm named Crimeophobia, the Aarey Colony police have booked BYJU’s owner Raveendran under IPC sections 120 (B) (criminal conspiracy) and section 69 (A) of the Information Technology Act.

The case was registered on July 30, he said.

ALSO READ | Why the most-valued start-up Byju’s is hungry for acquisitions

In the complaint, Crimeophobia alleged that the ed-tech company, in its UPSC curriculum, mentioned that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is a nodal agency for the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC).

However, the complainant said that the CBI had given it in writing that it was not the nodal agency for the UNTOC, the police official said.

Crimeophobia founder Snehil Dhall said, “I came across misquoting about UNTOC (India) implementation details in May on BYJU’s UPSC curriculum, after which I approached them through an e-mail, asking them to make necessary changes.

“In their reply, they sent me a letter from the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) about the CBI being the nodal agency. However, it was dated 2012, hence I found it unsatisfactory and approached the police.”

Dhall said that in 2016, the CBI had given in writing that it was not the nodal agency for implementation of UNTOC, after which he had filed a criminal writ petition in the Supreme Court against the Union of India and 45 ministries for not implementing the UNTOC in the country.

“The top agenda of India in UNSC is anti-terrorism and UNTOC is one of the core laws for cutting down terrorism, which has no takers for implementation due to which Crimeophobia had taken over the issue through SC,” he added.

A spokesperson of BYJU’s said, “We have obtained a copy of the FIR by making an application to the court.

Our lawyers are reviewing the FIR’s contents and we will take necessary steps as per legal advice.

“We received a letter from Crimeophobia, claiming that the preparatory material published by us for UPSC examination in relation to the UNTOC is incorrect.

“But contrary to the allegations, the material is factually correct and backed by a publicly available official memorandum issued by the MHA on April 30, 2012, a copy of which was also shared with Crimeophobia in response to the letter,” the spokesperson said, adding that all information that was utilised was verified.