Ex-MLA convicted for cheating

Ex-MLA convicted for cheating

The sixth additional chief metropolitan magistrate convicted former MLA of Kaikalur in Krishna district Y Raja Ramachander and imposed a fine of Rs 11,000 on him for presenting false bills and other documents and claiming Rs 4.15 lakh from the government towards a bypass surgery he did not undergo.

 He had indeed undergone a bypass surgery but that was when he was not an MLA and hence he was not eligible for reimbursement from the government. The court awarded similar punishment to a former employee of a private hospital for colluding with Ramchander by providing him with false bills of the hospital.

The case has taken several twists and turns in the last five years since it was first registered to reach the final conclusion.

Ramchander’s political opponent in 2004, M Suryachandra Rao filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the AP High Court after his complaints to the then director general of police, the Assembly speaker and the Assembly secretary did  not yield any results.

To prove his charges that Ramachander had not undergone surgery, Rao submitted newspaper clippings as evidence to show that he (Ramachander) was present in the Kaikaluru constituency attending various programmes during the period when he was supposed to have undergone surgery at a corporate hospital. On the High Court’s directions, the CID investigated and the trial was completed in 2007.

Subsequently, the government issued two orders withdrawing the case against the former MLA but both times, the court struck them down. The main accused appealed to the court to release him under the provisions of the Probation of Offenders Act which give the court powers to release certain offenders after admonition. But the court rejected his appeal.

Ramachander later told the media that he would move the High Court. “Lack of proficiency in English made me sign those bills,” he explained.

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