Karnataka govt challenges Jayalalithaa's acquittal in Supreme Court

The Karnataka government has filed an appeal in the Supreme Court against the Karnataka high court order acquitting Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalitha in the 19-year-old disproportionate assets case.

The state government advocate had pointed out arithmetical errors in the court's calculation of asset values and said the high court order was unlawful.

The appeal, filed through advocate Joseph Aristotle, seeks setting aside of the Karnataka HC order and also the disqualification of the AIADMK chief.

According to the state government, the HC had not granted ample opportunity for it to put forth its case.

In May, the Karnataka high court found that there was no evidence to show that while in office Jayalalithaa had accumulated more than Rs60 crore that could not be explained by her declared income. At the time, she drew Re1 as monthly salary.

The judge, however, did not find anything disproportional in a 10-per cent increase in her wealth during her first term, which, it said, was permissible (See: Jayalalithaa acquitted; set to return as CM).

The high court acquitted the AIADMK leader in the case, saying that her conviction by the special court suffered from infirmity and was not sustainable in law.

The verdict allowed Jayalalithaa to return as chief minister eight months after she was forced to resign when a lower court in Bangalore found her guilty in the same case and sentenced her to four years in prison and imposed a fine of Rs100 crore (Jayalalithaa to serve 4 years in jail, pay Rs100 crore fine in assets case).

She is contesting a bye-election in Tamil Nadu later this month to re-enter the Tamil Nadu legislature.