Court to pronounce sentence on Sukh Ram Wednesday

February 24th, 2009 - 6:59 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Feb 24 (IANS) A city court Tuesday put off by a day the sentencing of former union minister Sukh Ram, who has been convicted of amassing wealth in excess of his sources of income.
Special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) prosecutor Gurdial Singh told Special CBI Judge V.K. Maheshwari that Sukh Ram is liable for the maximum sentence of seven years under the Prevention of Corruption Act as the wealth he collected during his tenure as a minister of the government of India was disproportionate to his income, implying graft.

Sukh Ram was held guilty of amassing disproportionate assets of Rs.42.5 million and the CBI has pleaded for maximum punishment.

Advocate S.P. Minocha, appearing for 82-year-old Sukh Ram, however, pleaded for a lenient approach towards the former minister on the grounds of his old age, poor health and good past track record as a politician as well as minister.

Minocha claimed Sukh Ram was innocent and was a victim of political rivalry between H.D. Deve Gowda and P.V. Narasimha Rao, both former prime ministers.

After hearing both sides, the judge reserved order on the quantum of punishment till Wednesday.

On Feb 20, the court held Sukh Ram guilty of amassing wealth beyond his known sources of income. He was held guilty of amassing disproportionate assets to the tune of Rs.53.6 million between 1991 and 1996.

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