Controversy and Om Prakash Chautala have a long-standing relationship

Controversy and Om Prakash Chautala have a long-standing relationship

(File Photograph)

Chandigarh Former Haryana chief minister Om Prakash Chautala was sentenced to 10 years in prison today along with his son, Ajay, for corruption.

Last week, Mr Chautala, who is 78, was convicted with Ajay and 53 others for rigging the recruitment of thousands of government teachers in 2000, when Mr Chautala was chief minister. A court in Delhi accepted that the scam was underwritten by forged documents and bribes.

Mr Chautala is the president of the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) and has served five terms as chief minister of Haryana.  His son, Ajay, is secretary general of the party.

Neither will be able to contest next year's elections in Haryana unless their conviction is reversed by a higher court.

The Chautalas are also facing trial in two other cases in Delhi courts for a recruitment scam in the Haryana Civil Services, and for amassing a fortune that is vastly above their reported income.

Mr Chautala, whose father Devi Lal served as deputy prime minister, was accused in 1977 of trying to smuggle in wristwatches at the Delhi airport.

As chief minister in 1990, he was accused of protecting senior police officer SPS Rathore who allegedly molested a teen girl named Ruchika Girhotra.  She committed suicide.

His son Abhay was in the news recently after he controversially got elected as the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and Indian Boxing Federation (IBF) president. His election led to India being suspended from the International Olympic Committee (IOC). Indian boxers too have been banned from participating in international events for now.

Ajay Chautala is facing charges of disproportionate assets.

Story First Published: January 22, 2013 14:59 IST

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