Thursday, June 21, 2007

Court gives clean chit to RPP-N chief in graft case

The Special Court today acquitted former minister and chairman of the Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal Rabindranath Sharma in a corruption case filed by the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) around four years ago.The CIAA had accused him of amassing property worth around Rs 40 million.A three-member bench of judges Bhoopdhoj Adhikari, Komal Nath Sharma and Cholendra SJB Rana, said the case was taken up by the CIAA after crossing the time limit set by the CIAA Act, and thus, it cannot be accepted.Sharma was also acquitted in another case related to gold smuggling, in which he was one of the defendants.The court, however, convicted the main accused, Janardan Sharma — who was the chief of the Custom Department during Rabindranath Sharma’s tenure — in the case.The bench slapped a one-year jail sentence and Rs 11 million in fine on Janardan Sharma.In the gold smuggling case, the anti-graft body had charged the duo of amassing Rs 1 crore 9 lakh.The bench, however, issued a clean chit to Janardan Sharma on a disproportionate assetscase. The CIAA had accused him of accumulating about Rs 30 million during his tenure as a government employee.

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