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BCI corruption: CBI court sentences BCI trustee Rana, ex-vice-chair & ex-member to 5 years jail for law school ‘extortion’ racket [UPDATE-1]

CBI cracks down on BCI corruption: Orders jail for BCI trustee Rajinder Singh Rana and other
CBI cracks down on BCI corruption: Orders jail for BCI trustee Rajinder Singh Rana and other

Bar Council of India (BCI) current associate managing trustee Rajinder Singh Rana, former BCI vice chairman Raju Dhanpal Raj and ex-BCI-member Milan Kumar Dey have been sentenced to five years imprisonment and a fine for taking a Rs 6 lakh bribe to approve Global Law College in Ghaziabad.

NREC College former assistant professor Yashpal Singh has also been convicted and sentenced to five years in prison.

Special CBI judge Anju Bajaj Chandna handed the sentence down today in a special CBI court in Patiala House, Delhi, with the trial having commenced in November 2015 after four years of high drama.

Update 1, 19 July, 4:42am: The PTI has late yesterday (18 July) reported the story in seven paragraphs, adding that special CBI judge Anju Bajaj Chandna said:

It is clear that the accused have been seeking bribe from old and new colleges as a matter of right. The demand in form is nothing but extortion and also amounts to professional misconduct...

I hold that prosecution has been able to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt against all the accused persons for the charged offences.

"It is clear that the accused have been seeking bribe from old and new colleges as a matter of right. The demand in form is nothing but extortion and also amounts to professional misconduct...

"I hold that prosecution has been able to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt against all the accused persons for the charged offences," Special CBI Judge Anju Bajaj Chandna said.

According to the chargesheet, Rana and Raj, as part of a criminal conspiracy, “demanded Rs. Fifteen Lakhs as illegal gratification other than legal remuneration at the time of filing of application” from Global College of Law Ghaziabad chairman B.S. Sathyarthy to give a “favourable inspection report for the recognition of the said college”.

According to the chargesheet, co­accused Manish Tyagi - member of the advisory council of the Ghaziabad college – “negotiated and settled” with Rana to reduce the demanded amount to Rs 6 lakhs and paid Rs 5 lakhs to Rana on 17 December 2010.

On 20 December 2010, Tyagi then delivered Rs 1 lakh towards the remaining payment “outside office of Bar Council of India, Rose Avenue, New Delhi, which was recovered on the same day by CBI from”, committing an offence punishable under section 7 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988, stated the chargesheet.

Rana and Raj had been repeatedly denied bail in 2011, with Ram Jethmalani having represented Raj before the Supreme Court in 2011, with the high court having held that Rana was “too influential” to be let out.

In 2010, lawyers went on strike and allegedly manhandled CBI investigators over the allegations against Rana and the others, as the BCI suspended the three from their official roles at the BCI.

However, at some point after the 2011 hearings, Rana and the others were let out on bail, and Rana was appointed as managing trustee to the BCI Trust.

Read the charge sheet and more details about the case here.

Click here to read our reports of the full history of the case, running since 2011.

According to a CBI press release:

The Speical Judge, CBI cases, Patiala House Courts, New Delhi has today sentenced S/Sh. Rajinder Singh Rana, then Member, BCI, New Delhi & Sh. Milan Kumar Dey, then Member, BCI, New Delhi, both to undergo five years Rigorous Imprisonment with fine of Rs. Three lakh each; Sh. R Dhanpal Raj, then Vice-Chairman BCI, New Delhi to undergo five years RI with fine of Rs. One lakh and Sh. Yashpal Singh, then Assistant Professor, NREC College, College Road, Khurja (UP) to undergo five years RI with fine of Rs. Two lakh in a bribery case.

A case was registered against S/Sh. Rajinder Singh Rana, Member, BCI, New Delhi; Milan Kumar Dey, then Member, BCI, New Delhi; R Dhanpal Raj, then Vice-Chairman & Member, BCI, New Delhi; Yashpal Singh, Assistant Professor, NREC College, College Road, Khurja (Uttar Pradesh) and Chairman, school of Law Studies, Bulandshahar (UP) u/s 7, 12 & 13(2) r/w 13(1)(d) of Prevention of Corruption Act 1988 for demanding Rs 3 lakhs from the Chairman of a private School of Law Studies of Bullandshehar (UP) for expediting the procedure of recognition of the said School of Law Studies.

After completion of investigation, a charge sheet was filed on 29.06.2012 against four accused persons in the court of Special Judge for CBI cases, Patiala House Courts, New Delhi.

The Trial Court found all the four accused guilty and convicted them.

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