New Delhi, Oct 25 : Former Sikkim Chief Minister Nar Bahadur Bhandari was today convicted for bungling in the state water scam by a CBI court in Gangtok and sentenced to six-month imprisonment along with Rs 10,000 as fine.
Besides Bhandari, nine others, including Rural Development Secretary P K Pradhan, were also convicted in the scandal.
The scam led to a loss of Rs four lakh to the state exchequer.
Eight private contractors were also sentenced to five-month imprisonment and a fine of Rs 5,000 was slapped on them by the court.
The case was registered against the former chief minister and 15 others in 1984 and the charge sheet was filed in 1994.
The CBI charged them with criminal conspiracy, criminal misconduct and corruption. While two were acquitted, four contractors died during the trial period.
In 1983, the State Government had sanctioned 36 rural water supply schemes under the Minimum Needs Programme, involving an expenditure of about Rs 1.62 crores.
According to the CBI, Pradhan, in connivance with Bhandari, had awarded the works of rural water supply scheme in Sikkim to contractors on exorbitant rates causing loss to the state exchequer.