Bangalore, Nov 28 (IANS) A Bangalore court Wednesday sentenced Congress civic corporator L. Govindaraju to four years of rigorous imprisonment in a bribery case registered against him by a builder in July 2010.
Awarding the sentence under the Prevention of Corruption Act, Lokayukta (ombudsman) Special Court Judge N.K. Sudhindra Rao also slapped a fine of Rs.90,000 on Govindaraju, who represents the Ganesh Mandir ward of civic corporation in Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) in the city's western suburb.
The corporator will have to serve an additional six months in the jail if he fails to pay the fine.
The ombudsman's sleuths caught Govindaraju red−handed while taking a bribe of Rs.2 lakh from Udaykumar July 17, 2010. The builder's project was stalled by the civic corporation for alleged irregularities of the building by−laws.
To resume construction, Udaykumar approached Govindaraju who demanded Rs.8 lakh as bribe for regularising the project by circumventing the law.
Although the bribe amount was subsequently reduced to Rs.5 lakh, the builder failed to pay the entire amount.
Unable to bear the harassment by the corporator, Udaykumar lodged a complaint with the ombudsman office, which trapped the accused while accepting the Rs.2−lakh extortion−cum−bribe.
Govindaraju's counsel, however, said he would appeal against the harsh sentence in the Karnataka High Court soon after receiving a copy of the judgement.