New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday granted an interim bail till January 16 to former Union Minister Sukh Ram convicted in 1993 telecom scam case.
The apex court bench headed by Justice P Sathasivam also granted bail to veteran politician`s co-accused former bureaucrat Runu Ghosh and Hyderabad-based businessman P Rama Rao.
The apex court ruling is a major relief for Sukh Ram, who had been sent to jail to serve a three-year term in connection with a telecom scam in 1993.
All the three were convicted by the Supreme Court on January 5.
Sukh Ram initially evaded surrendering on health grounds saying he is hospitalised but two days after he appeared in the trial court, he was sent to jail.
Earlier on December 21 last year, the high court had upheld the lower court`s 2002 judgement holding Sukh Ram, Ghosh and Rao guilty of being part of a criminal conspiracy to defraud the state exchequer by awarding a telecom equipment supply contract to Hyderabad`s Advanced Radio Masts which had supplied inferior goods at a higher rate to the DoT.
Sukh Ram was telecom minister between January 18, 1993 and May 16, 1996, in the Narasimha Rao government.
The CBI had filed the charge sheet in March 1997, accusing Sukh Ram and Ghosh of entering into a criminal conspiracy with Rao.
Subsequent to the registration of various cases, the CBI, in 1996, had seized Rs 3.6 crore in cash which was concealed in bags and suitcases from Sukh Ram`s residence.