A Delhi court on Thursday sentenced former Samata Party chief Jaya Jaitly and two others to four years in jail in connection with the newsmagazine Tehelka's sting - Operation West End - on purpoted corruption in defence procurement.
The sentencing comes just five days after the trio of former party colleague Gopal Pacherwal and Major General SP Murgai (retd) were held guilty of corruption and criminal conspiracy. by special CBI judge Virender Bhat.
All three were convicted under Section 120-B of the Indian Penal Code, along with Section 9 (Taking gratification, for exercise of personal influence with public servant) of the Prevention of Corruption (PC) Act.
The case involves the accused purportedly accepted bribe from a fictitious company for supply orders for hand-held thermal imagers for the army.Aired by Tehelka, the whole sting operation was code-named Operation West End.
Incidentally, the meetings took place at the official residence of then defence minister George Fernandes, leading to the issue becoming a major national embarrassment for the erstwhile Vajpayee government. Fernandes briefly had to step down as the defence minister in 2001 before returning to the same position a few months later.