Sasikala: Poes To Prison
Jaya too found guilty; sentence disqualifies Sasi from contesting elections for 10 years
the Supreme Court delivering a deadly blow to Sasikala’s chief ministerial ambitions, governor Vidyasagar Rao is expected to order a floor test soon to end the impasse in Tamil Nadu
New Delhi: The Supreme Court has virtually ended AIADMK general secretary VK Sasikala’s chief ministerial ambitions when it upheld her conviction in a ₹ 66-crore disproportionateassetscasebyatrialcourtthat sentencedhertofouryears’imprisonment. Sasikala, who has roughly spent two months in jail earlier, will have to surrender before a Bangalore lower court, the top court directed. However, reports from Chennai said she was waiting for a copy of the verdict before surrendering.
Theconvictiondisqualifiesherfrom contestingelectionsforsixyearsinaddition to the four years she will be in jail. Her camp said it would seek a reviewof thejudgement,whichmaynot help as the review will be done by the samebench.JusticesPinakiChandra Ghose and Amitava Roy in their verdict held former TN CM Jayalalithaa tooguiltyof beingpartof theconspiracy to transfer her ill-gotten wealth to Sasikala and her extended family through several firms. J Elavarasi, Sasikala’s elder brother’s wife, and V Sudhakaran, son of Sasikala’s elder sister, too have been convicted. Jaya had adoptedSudhakaran asherfosterson,only to disown him later. All of them were s e n t e n c e d by a Beng alur u trial court to four years imprisonment and asked to deposit ₹ 10 crore fine for abetting a criminal conspiracy.Thetrialwasconductedin Karnataka under the SC order. They were also sentenced to another six months and ₹ 10,000 fine under the Prevention of Corruption Act. However,theKarnatakahighcourtin May 2015 overturned the conviction. Tuesday’s verdict has set aside the highcourtorderandrestoredthetrial court verdict. The trial court had also directed that the fine be recovered from Jayalalithaa’s assets left over and the other convicts’ fixed deposits, goldandotherjewellery.Therestshall be sold to recover any shortfall.
All immovable properties registeredinthe71namesof LexProperty Developments,MeadowAgroFarms, Ramaraj Agro Mills, Signora Business Enterprises, Riverway Agro Products and Indo Doha Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals, shall be confiscated, the SC verdict said, reviving the special court order. “The facts and circumstances proved in evidence undoubtedly point out that A2 to A4 (Sasikala and herrelatives)wereaccommodatedin the house pursuant to the criminal conspiracy hatched by them to hold her assets,” the court recorded.
Sasikala waiting for a copy of the Supreme Court verdict before surrendering
Flow of money from one account to the other proves that there existed active conspiracy to launder Jayalalithaa’s ill-gotten wealth for purchasing properties in the names of firms Governor pays heed to the complaints of chief minister O Panneerselvam and takes serious note of claims by OPS camp that MLAs are held captive. However, since OPS does not have numbers, governor invites Palaniswami to form govt and calls for a floor test immediately after the swearing-in Both Palaniswami and Panneerselvam fail to prove majority but refuse to side with DMK. Governor invokes temporary President’s rule by bringing into force Article 355. Not more than six months’ time is given to parties to prove majority in House and stake claim, failing which assembly could be dissolved and a call on fresh elections could be made
Sasikala and kin claimed to have independent sources of income, but the fact that they set up firms and acquired land from Jayalalithaa’s funds indicated that they had not congregated in her house for social living
Jaya did not allow them free stay out of humanitarian concern. Rather they were allowed to stay consequent to a conspiracy hatched by them to hold her assets
Jaya admitted to I-T authorities that she had loaned 1 crore to one such firm