2012: Cases involving politicians reached climax in court
New Delhi: Several old and new cases involving politicians reached final stages in Delhi trial courts in 2012 with Union Minister P Chidambaram emerging unscathed in 2G scam, but former BJP Chief Bangaru Laxman landed in jail in an 11-year-old graft case.
As trial courts remained busy dealing with cases of high and mighty, the long arm of law caught up with 72-year-old Laxman who was awarded four years' jail term for taking Rs one lakh as bribe in a fictitious defence deal case 11 years ago.
The year provided a relief to Finance Minister Chidambaram with a special CBI court dismissing Janata Party President Subramanian Swamy's plea to rope in the powerful minister as an accused in the 2G spectrum allocation case.
On February 4, Special CBI Judge O P Saini gave clean chit to Chidambaram holding that he did not indulge in any criminal conspiracy to derive any pecuniary advantage in decisions taken along with former Telecom Minister A Raja, who is a key accused facing trial in the case.
The court held that there was no evidence to suggest that there was an agreement between Raja and Chidambaram, who was the Finance Minister during the controversial allocation of 2G spectrum in 2008, to subvert the telecom policy and obtain pecuniary advantage for himself or for any other person.
Raja, too, got some relief this year with the court granting him bail after over 15 months of his incarceration in the 2G case.
At the fag end of the year, a court here ordered framing of charges against Congress MP Suresh Kalmadi for allegedly abusing his office and causing a loss of over Rs 90 crore to the exchequer in a Commonwealth Games-related graft case.
The court ordered framing of charges against Kalmadi, the sacked CWG Organising Committee chief, for allegedly committing various offences including those of criminal conspiracy, cheating and forgery under the Indian Penal Code and many others under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
During the year, while a former BJP president was caught on the wrong side of the law, the present BJP chief dragged a Congress leader in the court in a criminal defamation case.
The court summoned senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh as an accused to face trial in a criminal defamation case filed against him by BJP President Nitin Gadkari. Singh was also granted bail by the court after he appeared before it.
Gadkari had filed the defamation case against the Congress general secretary, who had allegedly accused him of having business links with his party MP Ajay Sancheti and pocketing around Rs 500 crore in the coal block allocation to Sancheti.
The year's high-profile cases involving politicians included that of former air hostess Geetika Sharma suicide, in which ex Haryana minister Gopal Goyal Kanda and one of his female aides have been charge-sheeted by the Delhi Police.
23-year-old Geetika was found dead on August 5 at her Ashok Vihar residence in North West Delhi. In her August 4 suicide note, Geetika had said she was ending her life due to "harassment" by Kanda and his aide Aruna Chaddah, a charge denied by them.
Kanda, who had surrendered before the police in connection with the case after he failed to get anticipatory bail from the trial court and the Delhi High Court, was charge-sheeted along with Aruna for allegedly unleashing "a series of wilful and malicious acts of mental torture, threat and blackmail" against Geetika leading to her suicide.
The year saw Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit too appearing before a court in a defamation case filed by her against Delhi BJP Chief Vijender Gupta to have her statements recorded.
The court had warned Dikshit's counsel that she should appear before it or else the case, in which the Chief Minister had accused Gupta of using "uncivilised" language against her before the April 15 MCD polls, will be dismissed.
During the year, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray too faced the ire of the court which ordered the Delhi Police to register a case against him for allegedly branding Bihar natives as infiltrators in Mumbai and threatening to throw them out of the state.
The order had come on a complaint by a advocate who said Thackeray's August 31 remarks, terming Bihar natives as infiltrators and threatening to throw them out of the state, were provocative and anti-national.
Former Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss, too, was caught on wrong side of the law with the CBI filing a charge sheet against him for allegedly abusing his official position and allowing an Indore-based medical college to admit students even without having sufficient academic infrastructure.
The CBI named the PMK leader and nine others as accused in a charge sheet filed against them, alleging that they committed the penal offence of criminal conspiracy and other offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
Towards the end of the year, a 27-year-old, 1984 anti-Sikh riot case against senior Congress leader Sajjan Kumar and five others too inched towards its final stage.
The final arguments are about to conclude in the case in which six Sikhs were allegedly killed in Delhi Cantonment area during the riots that had broken out after the assassination of the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984.