Former Haryana Chief Minister O P Chautala, serving a decade-long jail term by the Delhi High Court recently in a teachers' recruitment scam case, was today granted a month's parole by the Delhi government.
Lt Governor (LG) Najeeb Jung granted the relief to Chautala to enable him prepare his appeal against the high court's March 5 judgement upholding the conviction and ten years sentence awarded to him by a trial court.
80-year-old Chautala had surrendered at Tihar jail on October 11 last year after the high court cancelled his interim bail on October 10, 2014 for flouting bail conditions by campaigning for his party, Indian National Lok Dal (INLD).
Chautala moved an application before the LG seeking a three-month long parole on the grounds of preparing an appeal against the high court decision.
The five-time former Chief Minister in his representation to the LG said he needed to consult his lawyer and some senior advocates to file the special leave petition in the Supreme Court against his conviction.
Besides Chautala, the court had upheld the conviction and 10-year jail term of four others -- his son Ajay Chautala, whistleblower IAS officer Sanjiv Kumar, IAS officer Vidya Dhar, then officer on special duty (OSD) to the Chief Minister and Sher Singh Badshami, then MLA and political adviser to Chautala senior.
The court had, however, modified the trial court order on the quantum of sentence and awarded two-year jail term to 50 other convicts in the case.
Chautala, his son and eight others, including Vidya Dhar and Badshami, had been awarded 10 years jail term by the trial court for illegally recruiting 3,206 junior teachers in the year 2000.
Among other convicts, 44 had been sentenced to four years in jail and one to five-year jail term.
On January 22, 2013, a special CBI court had convicted and awarded varying jail terms to the 55 convicts.
The conviction and sentence had come under sections 120B (criminal conspiracy), 418 (cheating), 467(forgery), 471 (using forged documents as genuine) of the IPC and sections 13(1)(d) and 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act in the case relating to illegal recruitment of 3,206 junior basic trained (JBT) teachers.
Initially there were 62 accused in the case, but two died before filing of the chargesheet, four others during the trial of the case. One of the accused was discharged by the trial court whose orders were later upheld by the Delhi High Court.