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Sasikala's conviction in wealth case upheld by Supreme Court
 
(NEW DELHI,Feb 14, 2017):Longtime Jayalalithaa aide Sasikala's conviction in the disproportionate assets case+ was upheld today by a Supreme Court bench, nixing any possibility of her becoming Tamil Nadu chief minister.

She and the other accused will be soon taken into custody for serving out the remaining four years of her sentence.They will also have to pay a fine of Rs 10 crore each.

"In the past whenever Amma was in crisis, I also suffered this time also I will take it upon me. 'Dharma' will win", said Sasikala after the verdict, according to ANI, which cited AIADMK sources.

The verdict+ disqualifies Sasikala from becoming a legislator, and consequentially she can't be chief minister+ either. This also gives caretaker Tamil Nadu CM O Panneerselvam a huge boost in staking claim to be the legitimate successor to Jayalalithaa, who passed away in December.

Sasikala had staked the claim to be Tamil Nadu chief minister over Panneerselvam. His supporters thronged his residence after the SC decision.

"Amma's purity destroyed by traitors", tweeted the AIADMK in Tamil.

Late Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa was also named in the lawsuit, but the case against her stands abated with her demise. Though the criminal case against Jayalalithaa was abated, it was decided that the fine of Rs 100 crore imposed on her by the Bangalore trial court will be recovered from her properties+ .

A case was filed in 1996 against late Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa, following a complaint by now BJP MP Subramanian Swamy, that she had assets disproportionate to her known sources of income.

"I was expecting the conviction. I don't think she can escape the 4 years sentence," Swamy told ANI after the conviction was upheld.

The two separate judgements were today delivered by a twojudge Supreme Court bench comprising Justices Amitava Roy and Pinaki Chandra Ghosh. Justice Ghose authored the main judgment that ran into around a thousand pages. He himself described it as "fatty judgment". Justice Roy wrote a separate "thin" concurring judgment.

In the meanwhile, as soon as the SC bench upheld Sasikala's conviction, police entered the Koovathur resort outside Chennai where Sasikala is holed up with dozens of MLAs who support her.

The legal proceedings in the DA case against Jayalalithaa and Sasikala go back two decades. The apex court had transferred the trial to Bengaluru after a DMK member, K Anbazaghan, moved court alleging that the trial may not be free and fair if it continued in Chennai when the main accused was chief minister.

The Bengaluru trial court convicted Jayalalithaa on September 27, 2014, and awarded her four years imprisonment along with Rs 100 crore fine, with Rs 10 crore fine on the other three. The conviction disqualified her as an MLA requiring her to step down as CM. But she returned as CM after Karnataka HC on May 11, 2015 acquitted her, Sasikala and the others in the DA case.


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