The News Minute | September 26, 2014 | 7.00 pm IST
The Rs. 66 crore disproportionate assets case which Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has been embroiled in has gone on for over eighteen years, after a number of delays.
Apart from the vast collection of evidence and documents collected, the prosecution has relied heavily on verdicts reached in three cases for handling this case.
The News Minute brings you the details of what the prosecution used as arguments against Jayalalithaa in the case:
State of Madhya Pradesh vs Awadh Kishore Gupta case (2004)
The first of the cases that prosecution has fallen back upon is a Supreme Court ruling in the State of Madhya Pradesh vs Awadh Kishore Gupta case (2004) that stated that a public servantâ€™s income can only be proportionate to the returns that he receives from his service, investment or property.
Prosecution argued that the same can apply in the DA case since Jayalalithaa had declared an official income of Rs. 27, and even her previous earnings as an actor did not justify her assets.
Also, the others named in the case, Ms. Sasikala, Ilavarasi and V.N. Sudhakaran, were not engaged in any profession that justified their income and buying 32 companies. Sasikala, for instance, had announced in court that she was a mushroom producer.
Jayalalithaa and others have argued that they had enough earnings, especially from agriculture, which enabled them to start many ventures.
P. Nallammal Vs State Rep. By Inspector of Police (1999)
A second case ruling that the prosecution relied on was P.Nallammal Vs State Rep. By Inspector of Police (1999) case where in the defendant had attributed the excess wealth he had amassed to that acquired through dowry which was a legitimate source of income. However, the court had ruled that any â€śknown source of incomeâ€ť must be â€śa lawful sourceâ€ť. And since dowry was not a legal source of incomeâ€™, the wealth was illegal.
In the DA case, Jayalalithaa and other accused had told the court that Rs 20 crore odd money transferred to various bank accounts of companies they owned, was actually money given as subscription deposit by crores of party workers for the publication 'Namadu MGR'.
But the prosecution argued that Rs. 20 crore from subscription deposits collected for Namadhu MGR was illegal as it had clearance from RBI.
Lalu Prasad vs State of Bihar (1998 if disproportionate assets case)
The third and final case which the prosecution drew from was the Lalu Prasad vs State of Bihar(1998) â€¦ a disproportionate assets case which ruled that IT returns were not relevant to criminal proceedings.
Lawyers defending Jayalalithaa and other accused had argued strongly in court that all the accused had submitted pre-dated IT returns (for the 91- 96 period) , the income had been explained and these IT returns need to be taken into consideration.
The prosecution argued that IT return filings cannot be considered in criminal proceeding as the Income Tax department was only concerned about the quantity of money and not the quality. (source)