On Wednesday, Biju Radhakrishnan, the first person accused in the infamous Solar Scam in 2013, was sentenced to three years of rigorous imprisonment and was asked to pay a fine of Rs 10,000 by the Judicial First Class Magistrate Court 3 in Thiruvananthapuram. However, although the court convicted Biju, it has been decided that he does not have to serve the three-year jail term. This is because he spent more than five years in jail before the trial, in regard to another case in which he was accused of killing his former wife.
Biju was convicted of embezzling Rs 75 lakh from a Manacaud native in Thiruvananthapuram in connection with the Solar Scam. The money was taken from the complainant as an investment to set up a windmill in Tamil Nadu, under the name ‘Solar’. A case was registered in the Thampanoor police station, under the sections of the Indian Penal Code that deal with criminal conspiracy and embezzlement.
Biju is currently serving a life imprisonment sentence in Thiruvananthapuram’s Poojapura Central Jail for murdering his former wife. He was given the sentence by the Sessions Court in Kollam.
The Solar Scam which broke in Kerala in 2013, during the tenure of Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, shook the then UDF government. The scam involved a fake solar energy company called Team Solar Energy, that allegedly offered to install solar power units for customers and took advance payments, which never received any returns. The project was floated by Biju’s partner Saritha Nair, who allegedly used television actor Shalu Menon and her mother Kala Devi to make powerful political contacts and dupe several influential people of over Rs 75 lakh. The trial of the two women is still continuing in court.