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Madras HC convicts TN Higher Education Minister Ponmudi and his wife in disproportionate assets case

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The Madras High Court has convicted Tamil Nadu Higher Education Minister Ponmudi and his wife in a disproportionate assets case. Justice G. Jayachandran passed the order while setting aside the acquittal of Ponmudi and his wife P.Visalakhshi in the case filed by the Directorate of Vigilance and Anti Corruption in 2011. The Judge directed both Ponmudi and his wife to appear before the Court tomorrow to decide the quantum of sentence.

Finding them guilty of offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act, Justice Jayachandran said that the special Judge had manifestly erred in acquitting the minister and his wife. The senior advocate N.R. Elango sought the Court to grant an oral leave for them to prefer an appeal before the Supreme Court.

The Judge said that it can be decided tomorrow when they appear before the Court. He asked them to appear through video conferencing if there is any difficulty. But the Court prefers them in person, the Judge said.

In April 2016, Villupuram Special Judge for prevention of anti corruption act cases, T. Sundaramurthy acquitted the minister and his wife from the ground that the prosecution had failed to prove that they amassed 1.36 Crore rupees wealth disproportionate to their known sources of income. Ponmudi, who was the minister for mines and minerals in the previous DMK government.

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