Sukhram granted bail by Delhi HC; old-age benefits?

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New Delhi, Nov 28: The Delhi High Court has granted bail to former Telecom Minister Sukhram. He was convicted in the 1996 telecom scam where he was accused of accepting bribe as kickbacks for awarding contracts to a private firm.

86-year-old Sukhram has been held guilty for misusing his official position during his tenure as Telecom Minister in P V Narasimha Rao's Cabinet in giving a contract worth Rs 30 crore to a private firm, Haryana Telecom Limited (HTL) to supply 3.5 Lakh Conductor Kilometers (LCKM) of Polythene Insulated Jelly Filled (PIJF) cables to the telecom department.

According to reports, his age and his various old-age related ailments could have been the reason for the HC taking a lenient stand. His counsel had earlier pleaded in court, "I (Sukhram) am an 86-year-old person and attending the trial for past 12 to 13 years. I suffer from old age-related ailments and have lost my wife. Therefore, a lenient view may be taken." He also added, "age is a good consideration for leniency."

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