This Valentine’s, the decks are almost clear for O. Pannerselvam. AIADMK general secretary and a strong contender for the Tamil Nadu CM post, VK Sasikala was convicted of corruption charges by the apex court. The news came as a shock for Sasikala, who was about to declare her majority in the Tamil Nadu assembly this week. The lady suffered a jolt when the Supreme Court announced the reopening of a 21-year-old case involving her.
Here’s how the court sacked Sasikala for the corruption case.
In 1996, Janata Party Chief Subramanian Swamy filed a case against former Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa stating that she amassed assets worth Rs 66.65 crores, while she served as the chief minister of Tamil Nadu from 1991 to 1996.
In December 1996, a prosecution was launched in the Chennai High Court wherein Jayalalithaa, Sasikala and two others were found possessing assets that were disproportionate to their income. A charge sheet was filed against all offenders under Section 13 1(e), 13 (2) and 120-B IPC of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1998.
After a series of trials and judgements, the case was transferred to the Supreme Court in 2003, when the DMK general secretary K. Anbazhagan approached the SC. He approached the SC requesting the transfer of trials to Karnataka since fair trials were not possible in TN with Jayalalalithaa acting as the CM.
A decade later, a special court appointed by the SC convicted Jayalalitha, Sasikala and her aides on September 27, 2014. The former CM of Tamil Nadu was slapped with a fine of Rs 100 crores and a 4-year jail sentence.
With the sudden demise of Jayalalithaa in December 2016, there was an ongoing tussle between acting CM O. Pannerselvam and Sasikala because both the leaders wanted the CM position for themselves.
How the Supreme Court Sacked Sasikala: Not a Lucky Day for her Today
10:30 am: The SC asked Sasikala to surrender immediately.
10:38 am: The Trial court took Sasikala into custody.
10:43 am: The SC reversed the 2015 ruling of the Karnataka HC and restored the trial court order. The lawmakers slapped the offenders with Rs 10-crore fine and confiscated their properties.
10:44 am: Sasikala was sentenced to prison for four years in jail. She’s also barred from contesting elections for 10 years.
10: 50 am: Though the SC found evidence against Jayalalithaa, but the proceedings against the former CM stand abated.
11:00 am: Sasikala addressed her party MLAs and was likely to activate her Plan B to nominate an MLA to replace her in the party.
Reactions Following the SC’s Order
Subramanian Swamy, who initially filed the case reported that he was expecting Sasikala’s conviction and he doesn’t think that she could escape the 4-year sentence.
Former advocate general BV Acharya believes that the trial court’s verdict proves that Indian Judiciary is strong and independent.
DMK leader Tamilan Prasanna said that the case is a clear victory of truth and judicial system.
Meanwhile, Sasikala supporters, who were shocked after SC’s verdict camped at Kuvathur to show their support.
With the SC giving its verdict against Sasikala in the disproportionate case, the lady stands disqualified for the chief ministerial position. Seems like the tables have turned for Pannerselvam, who’s ready to take the top job.