Chautala and son convicted, jailed in 1999 teacher hirings scam

FP

Reacting to the verdict, Om Prakash Chautala's Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) said the judgment of the CBI court would be challenged. A statement by the Haryana unit of the party said all party leaders arrested in the case were innocent and this would be proved in a higher court.

Kumar was originally a whistleblower in the case and had approached the Supreme Court in 2003 alleging that lists of marks awarded to successful candidates in the recruitment process had been tampered with under pressure from the then CM Chautala and others. The Supreme Court had ordered a CBI inquiry in November 2003 and the CBI filed its chargesheet in 2008.

The CBI investigation revealed that the initial conspiracy was hatched at a meeting at Haryana Bhawan in Delhi, giving the Delhi court jurisdiction over the trial.

The probe had found that primary education director Rajni Sekhri Sibal, who deposed as a witness, had originally sealed the lists of marks awarded to the candidates in the oral exam for recruitment as primary school teachers in December 1999. However, she was pressured to change the lists by Chautala and others, and was transferred out of the education department after she refused to change the marks of candidates.

Kumar, who was appointed director, primary education, changed the lists in conspiracy with Chautala, Dhar, Badshami and others in September 2000, and declared the recruitment process results in October 2000, employing 3,206 candidates as JBT teachers in 18 districts. Kumar had approached the Supreme Court after allegedly falling out with his co-conspirators.

"When Rajni recommended for compilation of results vide her note sheet of June 20, 2000, she was also transferred and Sanjiv Kumar was appointed in her place," the court said, adding that Kumar's testimony proves he was brought with a "specific mandate of changing the award lists".

... contd.

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