Jail perks case: Karnataka court grants bail to Sasikala, four others

Bengaluru: The Karnataka Anti-Corruption Bureau Court on Friday granted bail to ousted AIADMK leader V.K. Sasikala, the close aide of late Tamil Chief Minister J. Jayalalitha and four others in connection with the jail perks case.

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Sasikala, her relative Ilavarasi and others were present in the court. The court had directed them to provide bonds of Rs 5 lakh each and asked them to be present for next hearing on April 16.

Sasikala and Ilavarasi were released last year after their four year term in the Parappana Agrahara Central Jail. However, it was alleged that they were given preferential treatment in the prison violating all norms and guidelines.

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The government had formed a team under retired IAS officer Vinay Kumar to probe the matter. The ACB has also lodged a case as allegations of corruption cropped up against jail officers.

The ACB, after obtaining permission from the government, had submitted a charge sheet against the accused – Sasikala, Ilavarasi, and prison staff Gangaraju, Suresh and two officers.

The Vinay Kumar team was formed after the allegations surfaced and sensational charges by then Karnataka DG (Prisons) D. Roopa, and its 295 page report confirmed Sasikala was given preferential treatment and a separate kitchen functioned for her in the central prison.

Sources say that Sasikala was allowed to wear her own clothes and she was given a cook. A pressure cooker and spices were found in her cell. She was also provided a separate visitor’s room and the corridor in the jail was barricaded for her. She also enjoyed free movement.

The CCTV footage showed Sasikala talking to a visitor for four hours and footage showed Sasikala and Ilavarasi moving out of their block holding a bag, sources said.

The investigation was ordered by then Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

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Indo-Asian News Service

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